Mark Wahlberg's 4 Children: Everything to Know

Get to know the actor’s four kids: Ella, Michael, Brendan and Grace

Mark Wahlberg and wife Rhea Durham with their children Ella, Michael, Brendan, and Grace attend Wahlberg's Hollywood Walk of Fame Star Cermony on July 29, 2010 in Hollywood, California.
Photo: John Shearer/WireImage

Mark Wahlberg has one of the most extensive résumés in Hollywood, but his "most important role" is being a father.

The Oscar-nominated actor and his wife, Rhea Durham, share four children: Ella, 19, Michael, 17, Brendan, 14, and Grace, 13. While raising four kids is "not easy," Wahlberg often turns to his faith "for the strength and guidance" to be the best parent he can be.

"I want to give my kids the world, but I also want them to appreciate everything, to succeed, to be good people, to enjoy life," Wahlberg has said about his parenting philosophy. "This is my most important role. If I fail at this, I fail at everything."

The proud dad is very supportive of his kid's individual interests. He even moved the family from Los Angeles to Nevada to give them a "better life."

"To be able to give my kids a better life and follow and pursue their dreams — whether it be my daughter as an equestrian, my son as a basketball player, my younger son as a golfer — this made a lot more sense for us," Wahlberg said during a virtual appearance on The Talk in October 2022. He added that he and Durham "came here to just kind of give ourselves a new look, a fresh start for the kids, and there's lots of opportunity here."

Here's everything to know about Mark Wahlberg's children.

Ella Rae Wahlberg, 19

Ella Wahlberg and her boyfriend James
Mark Wahlberg Instagram

Wahlberg and Durham first became parents when their daughter, Ella Rae, was born on Sept. 2, 2003, in L.A. The same day, one of Wahlberg's older sisters, Deborah Wahlberg, unexpectedly died from a heart attack at the age of 43.

As a result, Wahlberg has acknowledged how Ella's birthday can be a "bittersweet" day for the actor. When Ella turned 18 in 2021, Wahlberg shared a pair of images on his Instagram account paying tribute to both his daughter and his big sister.

"Happy B day my Ella❤️🎁18 years old 😚wow how time flies. So proud of you!! Always A [bittersweet] day. Missing my big sister Debbie💔 Ella's Guardian angel. 🙏❤️🙏😇," Wahlberg wrote alongside the two throwback images; one featuring him with Ella as a baby and another of him and Deborah.

Mark and Ella Wahlberg
Mark Wahlberg Instagram

Over the years, Wahlberg has admitted that raising a teenage daughter can be "a challenge."

"It's tough, but people say that they pass through it and they come back to you," he told PEOPLE in 2018. "She wants to go be off and doing her thing. [There's] a lot of attitude, a lot of aggression, a lot of, 'You're the worst, you ruin everything!' "

But the tumultuous years appear to be behind Wahlberg and his older daughter. The two have since bonded over some unlikely things: Ella's dating life and her fashion.

Ella Rae has been dating her boyfriend, James, for more than a year. Wahlberg has voiced his approval of his daughter's significant other, calling him "fantastic" and stating that the young couple is "perfect for each other." The actor and the teen boy also share lots of common interests, and the two have even hit the gym together.

"I used to work out to keep the boys away from my girls, and now I'm working out with the boyfriend. Imagine that," Wahlberg said in an Instagram clip. He added in his caption: "Ella is a lucky girl and I'm a lucky dad! He is a great young man."

Rhea and Ella Wahlberg
Rhea Wahlberg Instagram

Wahlberg and Ella have connected over her clothing choices — specifically, an old Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch T-shirt Ella purchased from a vintage shop.

"She's been rocking it like crazy," Wahlberg told PEOPLE of Ella's old-school Marky Mark gear. "She was really rocking [it] with me … It's nice to have [her celebrate] some of my past. That was actually a very nice little moment for me."

Michael Wahlberg, 17

Rhea and Michael Wahlberg
Rhea Wahlberg Instagram

Wahlberg and Durham welcomed their first son, Michael, on March 21, 2006, in L.A. As the older boy in the Wahlberg clan, Michael's name pays tribute to both his father and his grandfather.

"My dad called me Mike since I was a kid," Wahlberg shared ahead of this birth. "So in honor of my dad, I think we're going to name him Michael."

Growing up, Michael was "obsessed with everything sports" — including boxing at one point. When Wahlberg was filming the 2010 movie The Fighter, the actor had a boxing ring set up in the family's backyard to train for his role as Micky Ward. But Michael — who was just 4 years old at the time — quickly became infatuated with the ring, too.

"He just punches me as hard as he can," Wahlberg said of Michael. "Fun for him, not fun for me because literally I was like, 'This kid is starting to hit hard man!' "

Following in his father's faith, Michael celebrated a religious milestone in May 2022 when he made his confirmation. Wahlberg noted the special day on his Instagram, sharing a sweet photo of Michael with Durham.

"So proud of this young man❤️🙏congrats buddy!!" Wahlberg captioned the photo. "Even though mommy deserves most of the credit😂thanks babe🙏❤️."

In March 2023, Wahlberg celebrated Michael's 17th birthday with a sweet tribute on Instagram.

"Happy B Day Mikey🥳can't believe you're 17 already❤️time goes by so fast🙏 so proud of the wonderful young man you are😘," the Shooter star wrote.

Brendan Joseph Wahlberg, 14

Mark and Brendan Wahlberg
Mark Wahlberg Instagram

Brendan Joseph Wahlberg joined the growing family on Sept. 16, 2008. As Wahlberg shared during an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, his older siblings had mixed reactions to his arrival.

Initially, Michael was "completely frustrated" at no longer being the baby of the family, while Ella was "thrilled" to have a new sibling to play with. "She thinks she has a live play toy ... She loves it," Wahlberg said.

Brendan shares his older brother's passion for sports, even sinking a half-court basketball shot at just 10 years old. But Wahlberg has said that he often steers clear of his kids' sports practices or games and instead watches from the car, to help them "have their own identity."

"At first I took it personally, because I wanna be there to support them, but supporting them is by making them feel comfortable in what they're doing and them having their own identity too," he told Entertainment Tonight.

One sport Brendan plays with his dad, though, is golf — and Wahlberg lets him drive the cart. "Driving lesson! The kid's a natural. ❤️" Wahlberg captioned an Instagram video of Brendan behind the golf cart wheel — looking identical to his father.

Rhea and Brendan Wahlberg
Rhea Wahlberg Instagram

The dad of four posted a special tribute for Brendan's 12th birthday on Facebook, writing alongside a photo of Brendan and Durham posing in front of balloons, "This young man turned 12 yesterday! One of the hardest parts about filming a movie overseas is being away from my family, especially on special occasions. Happy birthday, Brendan!!"

In March 2023, Wahlberg and Brendan attended a UFC fight at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

"Fight night with this guy❤️," the Uncharted actor captioned a photo of the father-son duo.

Grace Margaret Wahlberg, 13

Mark and Grace Wahlberg
Mark Wahlberg Instagram

Wahlberg and Durham welcomed their fourth child, a daughter named Grace Margaret, on Jan. 11, 2010.

The Boogie Nights star has shared several sweet moments with his younger daughter over the years, including first communion in April 2018, her father-daughter dance in 2010 (where she refused to dance with Wahlberg) and a quarantine spa day in March 2020.

At 13 years old, Grace is already a budding equestrian. In an appearance on The Tonight Show in July 2022, Wahlberg joked about how his youngest had picked "the most expensive sport possible."

Mark, Rhea, Grace Wahlberg
Mark Wahlberg and Rhea Durham with daughter Grace. Mark Wahlberg Instagram

"She's already traveling the world, jumping horses and doing her thing," Wahlberg told host Jimmy Fallon about Grace. "She loves it … and she takes so much pride in the little stuff. She's at the barn every day, shoveling poop ... she's up before me."

Wahlberg had previously discussed Grace's love for horses, as well as a particular perk of the sport, during a 2018 interview with PEOPLE. "My younger daughter is heavy into horses and all that stuff — lots of stuff that keeps her focused and away from boys hopefully until she's 30, which is great," he joked.

Grace also bears a strong resemblance to her famous father, which Wahlberg poked fun at on Instagram in December 2022. Alongside a photo of Ella and a throwback shot of himself sporting shoulder-length hair, Wahlberg wrote, "They say we look alike? 💕👼."

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