John Wayne began life as Marion Morrison in Winterset, Iowa. After his family made its way to L.A., and an injury sidelined him from USC football, he began working full-time as a prop man for movie studios. His natural strength, good spirit, good looks, and determination carried him through nearly a decade of B-movies before he became a star. Thirty-five years after his death, he was still listed as one of America’s five favorite movie stars; he became “indivisibly associated with America itself.”

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