Remembering the Duke - Your West Valley News: Topstory

Remembering the Duke

John Wayne fans a cut above the rest

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 8:09 am

John Wayne was born Marion Mitchell Morrison 103 years ago today in Winterset, Iowa.

Any other information about the movie star’s life, career or beliefs can be obtained from Dave and Roberta Jenkins of Sun City.

Enter the couple’s barber shop in El Mirage and you’ll see more than 160 pictures, drawings and posters on the walls. A life-size cardboard cutout of The Duke stands in the corner and other memorabilia is everywhere.

No doubt about it, the couple are John Wayne fans.

“We had one customer about 20-odd years ago who brought in two (pictures). He brought us in an 11-by-16 and an 8-by-10 and that started it. And people would come in and say, ‘Oh, you guys like John Wayne?’ And they’ve been bringing them in ever since,” Roberta said. “We’ve bought maybe half a dozen of the (items) ... but we have 160 pictures on the walls, we have all kinds of books and collections and knives and all kinds of things.”

“People come in and they look around and pretty soon they come back in and say, ‘You haven’t got this one.’ And they bring it in,” Dave said. “Christmas time is the biggest time. We’ve got one guy who brings something every year at Christmas time.”

Included in the collection is a blanket, statuettes, cigarette lighters, carvings, paintings, posters, books, belt buckles, bola ties, coffee mugs, calendars and seven clocks. Dave even visited the modest, four-room house where Wayne was born and raised.

But, at home, the couple sticks to the basics. No pictures, no decorative plates, no John Wayne toilet paper (“It’s rough and tough and don’t take no crap off of nobody.”) At home, it’s all about the movies. They have more than 100 of the actor’s films.

“We just keep it all here,” Roberta said.

“We like the Western atmosphere. This is the West,” Dave added.

Every cranny of the small shop has another piece of the collection, and a TV in the corner features any John Wayne movie being shown.

“We’ve got the Western channel, and we like to watch that. If his movies are on TV, we’ll find them,” Dave said with a laugh.

The exuberance for The Duke — who got his nickname as a boy from local firemen who watched him walk past the station with his airedale dog and called the pair “Big Duke” and “Little Duke” — is shared by customers, the Jenkinses said.

“I did a guy about a week ago or so and he said ... he knew John Wayne’s grandson. And he said, “I’m going to tell him you have all this stuff and maybe he’ll come over and check it out,’” Roberta said. “Wouldn’t that be neat? That would be fun.”

El Mirage resident Walter Jones, who was Dave’s “second or third customer,” and has been frequenting the shop for nearly 25 years, said he enjoys the ambiance created by the decorations.

“I like it,” he said. “Who isn’t a John Wayne fan?”

If and when the couple decides to close up the shop and retire, they said they will donate their collection to John Wayne’s son if he is interested in it.

“If we found out he wanted it, we’d send it to him,” Roberta said. “He’s probably got it all already anyway.”

For the Jenkinses, John Wayne represents more than a great actor and major movie star. He is someone to respect and admire.

“I think a lot of people looked up to him as a hero, you could call it. He’s our favorite — I don’t have heroes. But a lot of people look up to him as a hero. I think he was a great man. He had some awful good ideas, which will never be used,” Dave said.

Despite the extensive collection, the rewatched movies — the couple said they’ve seen more than 120 of the more than 150 films he made — and the appreciation for their favorite actor, Dave said he has one regret.

“I never met him. They say he was a wonderful man and what you saw in person was just like him on the movie screen,” he said. “We’ll be watching his movies. We’re just happy to have had him.”

Dave’s Barber Shop is at 12329 N.W. Grand Ave., El Mirage, along Grand Avenue west of Primrose Street. The shop is open Tuesday through Saturday and may be reached at 623-583-9114.

Erin Turner may be reached at 623-876-2522 or eturner@yourwestvalley.com.

  • Discuss

Welcome to the discussion.

Wild Horse West

Tell Us What You Think!

Loading…

Neighbors still scared as hunt continues for Phoenix serial shooter

MARYVALE, AZ - Flyers continue to be posted throughout Maryvale, as neighborhood watch groups spread the word about the Phoenix serial shooter…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 7:36 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/wes…

American Geophysical Union Announces 2016 Fellows

26 July 2016 WASHINGTON, DC—The American Geophysical Union (AGU) today announced its 2016 Fellows, an honor given to individual AGU members wh…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 7:01 pm @ http://news.agu.org/press-release/american-geophys…

Hyundai Tucson gains modest interior enhancements for 2017

Hyundai has detailed a modest list of minor enhancements for the 2017 Tucson lineup. Buyers can now select an optional 315-watt Infinity premi…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 5:35 pm @ http://www.leftlanenews.com/hyundai-tucson-gains-m…

‘Stand by Me’ Oral History: Rob Reiner and Cast on River Phoenix and How Coming-of-Age Classic Almost Didn’t Happen

July 28, 2016 | 12:05PM PT It’s been three decades since “Stand By Me” became the little drama that could, catapulting River Phoenix to stardo…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 5:29 pm @ http://variety.com/2016/film/news/stand-by-me-30th…

Phoenix Suns coach Earl Watson seeking closure, justice after brother's shooting death

After a police officer was shot and killed in his hometown of Kansas City, Kansas earlier this month, Phoenix Suns coach Earl Watson used his …

Published: July 28, 2016 - 5:00 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/sports/sports-blogs-local/pho…

Rob Fullmer of Arizona Craft Brewers Guild on Why You Should Serve Beer With Dinner

Lauren Saria A A From now until we publish the 2016 edition of Best of Phoenix, New Times is naming 100 Tastemakers — members of our local cul…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 4:29 pm @ http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/restaurants/rob-ful…

Why This GOP Foreign Policy Expert Is 'Horrified' By A Trump White House

A senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, Boot has advised Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Mitt Romney on foreign policy. He's written …

Published: July 28, 2016 - 4:00 pm @ http://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/max-boot-anti-tr…

Fouhy: 4 things need to happen in order for the Arizona Cardinals to get to the Super Bowl

It's late July, and I'm already talking about Super Bowl 51! That's because, no matter where you look, the Arizona Cardinals are in the thick …

Published: July 28, 2016 - 3:29 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/sports/sports-blogs-local/fou…

FD: 4 people injured in Gilbert crash

GILBERT, AZ - Four people were injured in a two car crash in Gilbert Thursday afternoon. Gilbert Fire crews say one of the patients was transp…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 3:26 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-southeast-valley/…

Can We Trust Hillary With Nuclear Launch Codes When She can’t Secure her Emails?

No one seems to be stating the obvious: The email hacking has taken place on Obama’s watch. In addition, why is it that whoever did the hackin…

Published: July 28, 2016 - 2:59 pm @ http://constitution.com/want-entrust-hillary-nucle…

Facebook

YourWestValley.com on Facebook

Twitter

YourWestValley.com on Twitter

RSS

Subscribe to YourWestValley.com via RSS

RSS Feeds