Alongside that job, McRaney also worked in the Louisiana oil fields before earning a spot as a performer with the theater company. And in 1969 the Mississippi native’s life changed forever, when he made his movie debut in Night of Bloody Horror, which kick-started his screen career.
Some 12 months on from that, McRaney featured in his second movie, titled Women and Bloody Terror. From there, he made his small-screen bow in 1972, when he appeared in an episode of the TV show Night Gallery. And the actor then started to establish himself on television over the next few years.
McRaney was cast in plenty of well-known shows throughout the 1970s, in fact, such as The Waltons, Hawaii Five-O, Gunsmoke and The Six Million Dollar Man. Moreover, his impressive run continued into the 1980s, when he earned parts in a number of other high-profile series. However, everything changed in 1981.