1. A Life in Pictures
On June 13, 1981, Ben 'Son' Johnson was born in the small town of Foraker, Oklahoma. Growing up in a rural area, Johnson was surrounded by the beauty of nature and the warmth of a close-knit community. He was raised with strong values and a deep appreciation for the outdoors, which would later shape his career and life choices.
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2. A World Champion Rodeo Cowboy, Rancher, and Stunt Artist
Ben Johnson was an incredibly versatile individual, excelling in a variety of fields. Not only was he a world champion rodeo cowboy, but he was also a successful rancher and stunt artist. His skills in the rodeo arena earned him the title of world champion, and his ranching and stunt work allowed him to make a living and pursue his passions.
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3. Star of Three Movies as Travis
Ben Johnson, an acclaimed actor, has played the character of Travis in three consecutive movies: She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, Wagon Master, and Rio Grande. In each of these films, Johnson portrayed the role of Sergeant Travis Tyree in She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, Travis Blue in Wagon Master, and Trooper Travis Tyree in Rio Grande. His performance in these films earned him critical acclaim and cemented his place as one of the most iconic actors of his time.
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4. Ben Johnson's Belt Buckle Returns to Him 10 Years Later
When Ben Johnson visited Houston a decade ago, his prized belt buckle, which he had won for calf roping, was stolen from his car. However, when he returned to Houston as a guest on the radio station KIKK, a caller surprised him by returning the belt buckle to him. This was a special moment for Ben, as the belt buckle was a reminder of his hard work and dedication to calf roping.
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5. The Stunt Man Who Became an Actor
In 1940, Ben Johnson was hired by Howard Hughes to transport a load of horses to California. Impressed by the good pay, he decided to stay on and work for a few years as a stunt man, horse wrangler and body double for some of Hollywood's biggest stars, including Gary Cooper, James Stewart and John Wayne. During this time, Ben was able to hone his skills and gain valuable experience that would later serve him well in his career as an actor.
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6. Ben Johnson Takes Off: Noted by John Ford
Ben Johnson's career took off when legendary director John Ford noticed him and offered him a part in a new film. This was a major turning point for Johnson, as it led to him being cast in a major role in Ford's classic western, Wagon Master. This was Johnson's big break, and it opened the door to a long and successful career in Hollywood.
7. Ben Johnson honored with Hollywood Walk of Fame star
Ben Johnson, the legendary actor, was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7083 Hollywood Boulevard for his immense contribution to the world of cinema. Johnson's star was unveiled in a special ceremony in recognition of his outstanding career, which spanned over five decades and included roles in iconic films such as The Last Picture Show, The Wild Bunch, and The Getaway. His star is a lasting reminder of his legacy and his impact on the film industry.Advertisement
8. Ben Johnson Inducted into Western Performers Hall of Fame
In 1982, Ben Johnson was inducted into the Western Performers Hall of Fame at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. This prestigious honor recognizes Johnson's contributions to the Western genre, and his place in the history of the American West. The National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum is a renowned institution that celebrates the culture and history of the American West, and Johnson's induction into the Hall of Fame is a testament to his legacy.
9. Third Cowboy on the Right
In 1996, Tom Thurman and Tom Marksbury co-wrote the film 'Ben Johnson: Third Cowboy on the Right', which documented the life of the renowned actor Ben Johnson. The film was a captivating look into the life of the actor, providing an in-depth exploration of his career and personal life. It was a critical success, and is still remembered fondly by fans of Johnson's work.
10. Ben Johnson Dies After Heart Attack
While visiting his mother in the retirement community where he lived, Ben Johnson suffered a massive heart attack. This was particularly devastating for Ben, as the retirement community was a place of comfort and security for him, and he had been looking forward to spending quality time with his mother. Unfortunately, the heart attack was so severe that it ultimately took his life.
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