We all knew John Wayne as the cowboy with the swagger or a brave soldier fighting the country’s enemies.
But the Duke also was an incredible father with a huge family. The John Wayne estate posted a cool family photo, Thursday, on the John Wayne Instagram account. With Father’s Day this Sunday, it’s always nice to see Hollywood stars with their kids.
The black and white photo was undated, but it’s likely from the 1960s. He has one daughter riding on his shoulders, while he’s cradling another in his arms. The post uses a Wayne quote: ‘I am a demonstrative man, a baby picker-upper, a hugger and a kisser – that’s my nature.’ John Wayne loved being a father to his 7 children. “
The John Wayne Cancer Foundation loves to use the quote on special holidays, like Father’s Day or Valentine’s Day. It’s nice and mushy, certainly something you wouldn’t expect Wayne to say in one of his movies.
But Wayne was very proud of his family.
Patrick Wayne, one of John Wayne’s sons, said: “Dad believed a childhood should be filled with love.”
John Wayne Was Married Three Times. He Was Father to Seven Children
Wayne first married in 1933 to Josephine “Josie” Saenz. The two were married for a dozen years and had four children. He was just beginning his long and glorious career when he met Saenz and started a family. At the time, he was mostly appearing in lower-budget, B movies. His first big success was in 1939 with Stagecoach. By then, John Wayne was the father of three. His fourth child was born in 1940.
Wayne then married Esperanza Baur, an actress from Mexico. The marriage lasted eight years, but the two had no children. Months after his divorce from Baur, Wayne wed Pilar Pallette. She was an actress from Peru. He and Pilar were the parents of three kids. They remained married until Wayne’s death in 1979.
Michael Wayne, the Duke’s firstborn, ran his foundation. But he died in 2003 and age 68. Mary Antonia, who went by Toni, was Wayne’s oldest daughter. She passed away in 2000 at the age of 64. The other five children still are alive.
When Wayne died, his kids ranged in age from 14 to 44.
All his children at least dabbled in show business. His son, Patric k, had the most prominent acting career. He appeared in 11 of his dad’s movies. Patrick’s acting resume included 40 movies. Plus, he hosted two TV shows — The Monte Carlo Show and Tic-Tac-Dough.
Ethan Wayne was named after his dad’s character in The Searchers. He was both an actor and a stuntman. And he now manages John Wayne Enterprises and directs the John Wayne Cancer Foundation.
“He was a man of honor,” Melinda Wayne Munoz said of her dad “I loved being my father’s daughter.” Munoz had four children, with 16 grandchildren.
His grandkids referred to John Wayne as “granddaddy.”
Happy Father’s Day!