While Mark Wahlberg‘s list of iconic Hollywood roles is something to be proud of, nothing lights him up quite like being a father to his four kids.
The Lone Survivor actor first became a father when he and wife Rhea Durham welcomed their eldest child, daughter Ella Rae, in 2003. At the time of Ella’s arrival, Mark and the former Victoria’s Secret model had been dating for about two years.
In 2006, the Fighter star and his brunette beauty welcomed their second child, Michael. Two years later, the proud parents expanded their family for the third time when son Brendan arrived in 2008.
Although Mark and Rhea were not married at the time of Ella, Mike or Brendan’s births, they went on to tie the knot in July 2009. The longtime twosome celebrated their romantic nuptials by welcoming their fourth and final kiddo, daughter Grace, in 2010. Can you say, instant family?!
Considering the Hollywood heartthrob is no stranger to sharing cute snapshots and videos of brood on his social media accounts, it’s no surprise he also gushes over them in interviews. While chatting with Redbook magazine in September 2019, Mark opened up about the difference between being the father of daughters versus sons.
“Having two daughters changed my perspective on a lot of things, and I definitely have a newfound respect for women,” the Daddy’s Home star revealed at the time. Besides praising Grace and Ella for being “very strong, smart and independent,” he also admitted he “finally became a good and real man” after having a daughter.
“Women don’t get the credit they deserve,” he explained to the outlet. “I was at my daughter’s ballet class and I was on the phone making a business call and watching her on the monitor, and I realized how hard it is to work and be there for your kids. As far as I’m concerned, there’s no job more important on the planet than being a mom.”
While Mark can’t seem to say enough sweet things about his little girls, there’s no doubt he loves being a dad to his two sons. During an appearance on Today in January 2012, the New Kids on the Block alum explained why he takes fatherhood so seriously.
“If I succeed as a businessman but fail as a father, then it’s all been for nothing,” he shared at the time. “That’s by far the most important role that I’ll ever play in my life — being a parent and being a husband.”
Scroll through the gallery below to get to know Mark’s kids, Ella, Mike, Brendan and Grace!
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