John F. O'Donohue may not be as well known as Dennis Farina, Eddie Egan, or Barney Martin -- three police officers who became television stars -- but he's in the running. A 20-year veteran of the New York Police Department, O'Donohue joined the acting profession in the late '80s and ascended to bit parts in movies, moving up to supporting and guest-starring roles in television before reaching regular status on NYPD Blue in 2004. Born in New York, he was a career officer who rose as high as lieutenant in the Midtown North precinct, turning to acting as an outlet for feelings he repressed as a police officer. After some classes, and appearances in off-off-Broadway productions, he made his debut in the Ben Stiller-directed MTV program Colin Quinn: Back to Brooklyn. O'Donohue retired from the force and moved to Los Angeles to pursue work in television, making appearances in bit roles in episodes of Knots Landing and Reasonable Doubts, but it was Stiller who pulled him out of the pack of working actors. Stiller remembered O'Donohue's work in the MTV show when he was putting together the cast for his FOX network satirical series The Ben Stiller Show, and made him a regular on the series. O'Donohue showed his comedic abilities as a member of Stiller's stock company, and he later worked on The John Larroquette Show as a regular cast member in addition to appearances in series such as Knots Landing, Reasonable Doubts, and Matlock. He was a natural at playing cops (and also, occasionally, firemen), not just by experience but also with his easy New York working-class vernacular, bald physiognomy, and muscular presence. He made his first appearance on NYPD Blue in 1994 as a court clerk in the second season lead-off episode "Trials and Tribulations" and its follow-up, "From Whom the Skell Rolls." O'Donohue made the rounds on television, alternating between dramas and comedies, including Mad About You, Seinfeld, The Single Guy, Chicago Hope, Brooklyn South, Cybill, Diagnosis Murder, and Columbo, in ever larger parts. One of his funniest guest appearances was in the 1998 "Civil War" episode of Everybody Loves Raymond, playing Harry, the Civil War reenactor friend of Peter Boyle's Frank Barone. Although it was drama that would make O'Donohue into a star, he got there by way of his ability with comedy. In 2000, he rejoined NYPD Blue as a recurring cast member, portraying Detective Eddie Gibson, a veteran cop who's gone a little bit goofy working the night tour at the 15th squad, a character intended to interact comically with Dennis Franz's taciturn, slow-burning Detective Andy Sipowicz. O'Donohue was good enough as Gibson that the character was brought back and embellished over the ensuing seasons, presented as a man out-of-his-depth in modern detective work, but who also has a big heart where kids are concerned. In March 2004, O'Donohue rejoined the cast as a regular in March of 2004, playing newly promoted squad commander Det./Sgt. Eddie Gibson, still a tiny bit goofy, but knowing his limitations. During that season of the cop drama, O'Donohue gave a vivid portrayal of the increasingly rare old-fashioned cop, probably second generation on the force and Irish on at least one side, and likely a member of the Emerald Society. His presence on the series since 2000 was reminiscent of actors such as Horace McMahon on Naked City, among dozens of others, and provided the show with a great degree of verisimilitude.