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The downside to Magnum's occupation was the lack of money and the physical pain and trauma that went with the job. To solve his financial woes, Magnum taught a private eye course at a local college and took a "real" job as a hotel detective. As for the rock'em, sock'em part of his job, Thomas did his best to avoid punches to the face, and the conks on the noggin but there were certain things out of his control like the time Thomas crashed Robin's Ferrari and ended in the hospital with amnesia. But probably the strangest ordeal suffered by Magnum was in 1987 when he was mortally wounded in a gun fight. He died, went to heaven but miraculously returned to life. Could it be that Thomas just couldn't leave this mortal realm without knowing whether Higgins was really Masters?

Close-up of Thomas Magnum's Team Ring from the  'Magnum, P.I.' TV series

While in Vietnam, Thomas and a group of his war buddies had rings made to commemorate their tour in Asia. The Ring displays the Cross of Lorraine, a military symbol inspired by the standard of French heroine Joanne d'Arc.

A recurring theme in Magnum's life was the Vietnam War. Thomas had served as a Lieutenant with the VM02 Unit in Da Nang. He wore a cap with the VMO2 emblem as a souvenir of those days. Magnum's tour of duty included being tagged as a prisoner of war (No. 73762) and tortured by a Russian agent (who showed up in Hawaii, year later). But perhaps, his most bitter sweet memory of Vietnam was Michelle, an Asian woman whom Magnum married briefly in Saigon during the war, only to be separated during a bombing. Assuming her dead, Magnum mourned his lose until Michelle turned up alive and with her first husband General Hue, a Vietnamese dignitary. In 1986, Michelle feared for the life of her 5-year-old daughter Lily and consequently, left her with Magnum for safekeeping. A car bomb killed Michelle soon after. This gave Thomas pause to reflect on his life and so he decided to rejoin the US Navy.

Some points of interest about Thomas Magnum. He carries a lucky $2 bill (which he lost on his 40th birthday). Magnum's grandfather gave him the bill which has his birthday as the serial number. Each year on the Fourth of July, Thomas likes to be alone at sea on his surf-ski to contemplate life. To keep the sun out of his eyes, Thomas wears a baseball cap form the Detroit Tigers - his favorite team. And Magnum's typical choice of wardrobe was a casual shirt (often with flowered prints) and either shorts or jeans. When he wants a cool drink, Magnum reaches for the bubbly, satisfying taste of a good old-fashion bottle of beer. Thomas' favorite movie is "Stalag 17." His preferred weapons are a .45 caliber hand gun and a Walther PPK (carried in an ankle holster).

"This morning in paradise was not much better than the one yesterday. In other words – it was perfect. And morning in paradise is the perfect time of day. A quiet run, then a swim; it's a time your truly alone; a time when you're allowed to fully appreciate the rhythms of living. Besides, Higgins was going to be gone all day, and that made me appreciate the rhythms of living, even more" -- Thomas Magnum

T.C. and  Thomas in front of an Island Hopper Helicopter - Photo courtesy of the TV series 'Magnum P.I. Thomas Magnum leaning against a red Ferarri automobile and sporting a great big smile - Photo courtesy of the TV series 'Magnum P.I.

Thomas Magnum with his two
most favorite forms of transportation

TRIVIA NOTE: The address on Magnum’s drivers license reads 11435 18th Ave., Honolulu, HI (46816).

The Ferrari's license plates were 308-GTSI (seen during the opening credits) and Robin-I. (The other plates were Robin 2 - Audi 3000 and Robin-3 - GMC Jimmy).

During the series run, the show featured three distinct types of Ferrari 308: a 1979 308 GTS - Serial No. 29109 ; a 1981 308 GTSi - Serial No.34567, and a 1984 308 GTS QV (Quattrovalvole) - Serial No. 57685. The cars driven by Tom Selleck were modified to accommodate his very tall physique.

All the Ferraris used on the show were auctioned off when the series quit production. Reportedly, Larry Manetti, who played Rick on the show purchased one of the early cars from Universal Studios.

Tom Selleck wore his trademark Detroit Tigers baseball cap on the program as an homage to his hometown team.

Robin's Nest, the fictional home of Robin Masters, is actually The Anderson Estate. It is owned by Eve Glover Anderson and located on the island of Oahu in Hawaii.

Walt Disney Television Animation (Buena Vista Television) created an animated spoof of the MAGNUM series entitled CRO MAGNUM P.I./CBS/1992 about a stone age gumshoe.

Magnum's birthday is also given as August 8th, 1944 (The same month and date of birth for Donald Bellisario, the show's producer).

Over his 8-year stay at Robin's Nest Thomas drank a lot of milk and, according to one count, he chugged down about 119 bottles of beer. He mostly drank Old Dusseldorf beer in long neck bottles


MAGNUM. p.i./CBS/1980-88

Tom Selleck as Thomas Sullivan Magnum
John Hillerman as Jonathan Quayle Higgins III
Roger E. Mosley as Theodore 'TC' Calvin
Larry Manetti as Orville 'Rick' Wilbur Wright
Jeff MacKay as Lt. "Mac" McReynolds
Jeff MacKay as Jim "Mac" Bonnick
Lance LeGault as Col. Buck Greene
Kathleen Lloyd as Carol Baldwin
Jean Bruce Scott as Lt. Maggie Poole
Gillian Dobb as Agatha Chumley
Elisha Cook as Francis "Ice Pick" Hofstedder
Dr. Ibold as Glenn Cannon
Kwan Li-Him as Lt. Tanaka
Carol Burnett as Susan Johnson
Marta DuBois as Michelle Hue (Magnum)
Orson Welles as Voice of Robin Masters


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