Actor Tom Laughlin has died at the age of 82. The Billy Jack star passed away in Thousand Oaks, California on Thursday (12Dec13). Laughlin began his career in 1955 in the U.S. TV series Climax! and went on to star in films including Gidget, These Wilder Years and Lafayette Escadrille. However, the actor was perhaps best known for his role in the 1970s Billy Jack vigilante movies, all of which he directed and co-produced. He also wrote, under the pseudonym T.C. Frank, directed and starred in The Born Losers in 1967. In addition to his acting career, Laughlin was also known for his activism and political involvement. He ran for president of the United States three times and started a Montessori preschool, which emphasises independence and a child's natural development, in California, which went on to become the largest school of its kind in the U.S. Laughlin is survived by his wife of 60 years, actress Delores Taylor, and their three children - Frank, Teresa and Christina.