A Life Filled With Secrets and Sacrifices: The Untold Story of Tab Hunter

Prepare to journey back in time to the golden era of Hollywood, where glitz and glamour reigned supreme. Today, we delve into the captivating life of Tab Hunter, the heartthrob of the 1950s and 1960s. But behind the scenes, Hunter led a life filled with hidden truths and sacrifices, navigating a world that demanded he keep his personal life tightly under wraps.

Born in the vibrant city of Manhattan, New York, in 1931, Tab Hunter discovered his love for the silver screen at a young age. In pursuit of his dreams, he even fibbed about his age to join the US Coast Guard at the tender age of 15. While his peers reveled in the joys of pub life, Tab spent his time diligently watching movies, honing his acting skills. Little did he know that destiny had something extraordinary in store for him – a journey to the heart of Hollywood.

At only 17 years old, Tab Hunter crossed paths with Henry Willson, a renowned agent known for his keen eye in spotting talented male actors. Willson’s focus went beyond acting chops; he sought chiseled features and a fine physique. Hunter, with his “Malibu beach boy looks,” fit the bill perfectly. In no time, he became one of the era’s most adored heartthrobs, capturing hearts with his undeniable talent and dashing good looks.

However, beneath the veneer of fame and the adulation of countless female fans, Tab Hunter led a double life. Just like many other gay actors in a time when homosexuality was taboo, he concealed his true identity to safeguard his career. Behind closed doors, he pursued relationships in secrecy, never daring to reveal his authentic self to the world. Imagine the isolation and fear that came with not being able to enjoy a simple dinner or movie date with a partner without the constant worry of exposure.


In his later years, Tab Hunter broke his silence and spoke candidly about the challenges he faced as a secret gay man in Hollywood. He acknowledged that he had to learn the art of concealing his true self through experience, picking up the necessary skills on the job. However, the charade of heterosexuality took its toll on him, leading to immense emotional strain and weariness.

Yet, as the saying goes, “True love conquers all.” Eventually, Tab Hunter found solace and happiness in the arms of his lifelong partner, Allan Glaser. After years of concealing their love behind closed doors, he decided it was time to embrace his true self, both privately and publicly. Together, Hunter and Glaser embarked on a journey of love and companionship, choosing to retreat from the glaring Hollywood spotlight. They found solace and joy in a simple, modest cottage outside the picturesque city of Santa Barbara.

When reflecting on his remarkable life, Tab Hunter emphasized that success should not be solely measured by fame and fortune. In his eyes, true fulfillment came from the love he shared with Glaser and the tranquility of their chosen path. Unfortunately, Hunter’s journey came to an end in his beloved home at the age of 86, succumbing to a heart attack caused by a blood clot in his lungs. Yet, his legacy as a Hollywood icon and a courageous trailblazer in the LGBTQ+ community lives on, inspiring countless others to live their truth.

Now, we invite you to join the conversation. What are your thoughts on the challenges Tab Hunter faced in his professional life? We would love to hear your personal stories and reflections in the comments below. Let’s keep his remarkable legacy alive and continue the dialogue on the price of authenticity in a sometimes unforgiving world.


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