After five seasons, Rockmond Dunbar has exited 9-1-1. Both 20th Television and Rockmond himself have confirmed that the 48-year-old actor will not return to Fox’s hit procedural series due to the COVID-19 vaccine mandate. Rockmond, who played Michael Grant, the ex-husband of Angela Bassett‘s Athena Grant-Nash, since the show’s premiere in 2018, addressed his exit from the show in a statement obtained by several news outlets after he was written off the show on the Nov. 15 episode.
“I applied for religious and medical accommodations pursuant to the law and unfortunately was denied by my employer,” he said. “My sincerely held beliefs and private medical history are very intimate and personal aspects of my life that I do not publicly discuss and have no desire to start now. As a man that walks in faith, I look forward to what the future holds. I have enjoyed the last five seasons with this wonderful cast and crew and will cherish the time I’ve been blessed to spend with this series and wish everyone involved nothing but the best.” Below, learn more about Rockmond Dunbar.
1. Rockmond is Nigerian.
Rockmond was born in Oakland, California, but his ancestry is from the Yoruba race in Nigeria. In 2011, Rockmond traveled to Nigeria with his mother so they could connect with their ancestral ties, according to a past interview. During his trip, he was reportedly given the Yoruba name Ombowale, which translates in English to “our son has come home.”
2. He’s appeared on several hit shows.
Rockmond has a pretty impressive acting resume. One of his first roles was in the early 2000’s Showtime series Soul Food, in which he played Kenny Chadway. Rockmond later had big roles in Prison Break, Sons of Anarchy, The Mentalist and The Path. He also had guest appearances on CSI: Miami, Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, and Scorpion.
3. He was an original cast member on ‘9-1-1’.
In November 2017, Rockmond was cast as Michael Grant in 9-1-1 alongside Angela Bassett, Peter Krause, Connie Britton, Oliver Stark, Aisha Hinds, and Kenneth Choi. The show officially premiered on Fox in January 2018, and quickly earned positive reviews from critics while performing well in the ratings. Michael was married to Athena (Angela) at the beginning of the series, but their marriage eventually fell apart when Michael came out as gay. Michael’s friends and family supported him, and he eventually became romantically involved with Dr. David Hale (La Monde Byrd). In episode 8 of season 5, which aired on Nov. 15, 2021, Rockmond was officially written off the show when Michael decided to go to Haiti with David, who wanted to use his medical skills there to help people in need. Before they left, they got engaged!
4. He’s been married twice.
Rockmond was previously married to Ivy Holmes from 2003 to 2006. A few years after their divorce, he began dating actress and writer Maya Gilbert. They got engaged in Montego Bay, Jamaica on December 30, 2012, and their wedding took place in secret on June 11, 2013. And since then, they’ve expanded their family!
5. He has 4 kids.
Rockmond and Maya are proud parents to four children: Berkley Seon, Cz., Pharaoh, and Sultan. Rockmond will often document fun family outings with the couple and their children on his Instagram page. On his 48th birthday in January 2021, he shared a snap of all four kids hugging their dad, and wrote, “48 and Loving it!!!!.”