Former telephone lineman who made his film debut in John Cromwell's sentimental wartime tribute to the American home front, "Since You Went Away" (1944), while still in uniform with the Navy. Nicely built and slightly tough-looking but nonetheless boyishly handsome, the wavy-haired Madison briefly became an idol of bobbysoxers much as Van Johnson and Frank Sinatra were. RKO Studios clearly tried to build him up as a star in 1946 and 1947, first by casting him in a leading role alongside Dorothy McGuire and Robert Mitchum in a modest but appealingly low-key reprise of "The Best Years of Our Lives" entitled "Till the End of Time" (1946). Although the story of several returning servicemen proved popular and Madison displayed warmth and sincerity, his somewhat limited acting ability and experience showed in comparison to his more able co-stars. "Honeymoon" (1947), meanwhile, a tepid romance top-billing the teenaged Shirley Temple, bombed at the box office.