When my brother and I were growing up, every Saturday was ‘movie’ day. Our mom would drop us off at the local movie theater with enough money to buy our tickets and snacks to last us the 5 hours we would be there. Back in those days, there was always a double feature.
Our mom would do the grocery shopping, get her hair done and anything else she needed to do without us around to interfere. And yes, there was a time when pre-teens could spend the day at the movies alone.
I remember one Saturday going to see the movie The Wild Bunch. We loved our Westerns. Shoot ’em up, bang bang. Oh what ever happened to a good, old fashioned, western movie?
The movie starred William Holden, Ernest Borgnine, Robert Ryan, Edmond O’Brien, Warren Oates, Jaime Sanchez and Ben Johnson.
While I had heard the names of some of those cast members back in the day. one of them turned out to our mom’s 5th cousin on her maternal side of the family.
I wish I had known then what I know now and to have had the opportunity to meet him and spend a day on the set of one of his movies.
So which actor was my mom’s 5th cousin?
His full name was Warren Mercer Oates. His 4th great grandfather, Jesse Oates was the brother of my mom’s 4th great grandfather, John Oates.
We all lived in Los Angeles at the same time and, while the cousinship is rather distant, we never knew the cousin named Warren Oates was from our family.
Netflix has the movie in their catalog. Maybe it’s a great choice of viewing tonight with a pizza and a bottle of wine.