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Thread: Steve McQueen's Last Ride Revealed

  1. #1
    R.I.P. 2015-05-13 minir's Avatar
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    Cool Steve McQueen's Last Ride Revealed

    Hi to all
    I am a big Steve McQueen Fan and when i saw this Article i thought others might be interested in it as well. He was quite the Guy.
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    John Harlow, Los Angeles
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    THE secrets of Steve McQueen’s final years, when he abandoned movie stardom for an anonymous odyssey through smalltown America in search of happy families, are to be revealed in a memoir by his last wife, Barbara.

    The king of cool left Hollywood after the 1974 blockbuster The Towering Inferno and crisscrossed the United States, making friends with ordinary people who often failed to recognise their burly, heavily bearded fishing or drinking pal for days.

    They thought he was some dirty old man with this young girl, running around the country, said Barbara McQueen in her first interview with a British newspaper since his death in 1980. Which he got a hell of a kick out off. Mind you, it was also true! Their three-year relationship was more peaceful than his first marriage to Neile Adams, his teenage sweetheart, which ended when he put a gun to her head in a jealous rage, or his second to Ali MacGraw, his co-star in The Getaway, which also ended in bitterness.

    This was Steve laying aside all his Hollywood stuff to become a real person,” Barbara said. Although I fell in love with him at first sight, I never treated him like a star and Steve was easy with that.”

    McQueen said she could not talk about her husband until, three years ago, she reached 50, the age he was when he died of cancer.

    We talked about writing a book with his stories and my photographs but were always too busy to get it down. It was going to be called The Long Haul. He made a joke about it when I wheeled him down a hospital corridor for blood tests the long hall, he called it.

    Steve McQueen: The Last Mile, which she wrote with her husband’s biographer Marshall Terrill, will be published in November when Bonhams & Butterfields, the auctioneers, host what is expected to be the last significant sale of his memorabilia in Los Angeles.

    The Oregon farmgirl turned model said she was house clearing before moving from her home in rural Montana. It is time to say goodbye, not to Steve but to the clutter he left behind. He bought everything he liked in twos, so there was a lot of stuff just hanging around here.”

    The auction will include motorbikes, saddles and his truck with the number plate MCQ3188, the last digits of his identity number when he lived in a Californian juvenile remand home. She is also selling a pair of blue Persol sunglasses that he made famous in The Thomas Crown Affair, a film she saw only recently. It made me cry, so I will not be watching any more of his films.

    Because McQueen shunned the press, there were many rumours about how they met, but his widow has finally disclosed the truth.

    In July 1977, when he was still married to MacGraw, he was smitten after spotting a picture of her advertising Club Med holidays in a magazine.

    So he set up a casting session for some film that was not quite happening at the Beverly Wilshire hotel in Los Angeles where he lived, and I met him in the lobby with my agent. But when I saw him I realised I had been confusing him with Paul Newman.

    And then I realised who he was and that I had had a crush on him when I was a kid when he was on television in the series Wanted: Dead or Alive. That was pretty strange. But I knew this was the man I wanted to marry.

    Shortly afterwards they ran away together. They eventually moved into McQueen’s beach house in Malibu, west of Los Angeles, next door to Keith Moon, the drummer of the British rock band the Who.

    Steve found him passed out on the beach dressed in a Nazi uniform, complete with jodhpurs, cap, leather coat and a swastika armband. Steve pulled him back to safety and deposited him on his doorstep for someone else to clean up.

    After the rocker got into a fight with McQueen’s teenage son Chad and refused to curb his beach parties, McQueen took direct action.

    One night Steve grabbed his shotgun and marched over to Moon’s house. Moments later I heard a blast reverberate throughout the neighbourhood as the stained glass window over Moon’s bathroom shattered. Steve marched calmly home and Mr Moon never said a word.

    After that the couple took to the road. McQueen, the star of The Great Escape, Bullitt and Papillon, was unrecognisable in a beard and wire glasses. They would go to small towns and make friends with the locals.

    Steve was a bit of a voyeur a harmless one. He lurked outside people’s homes and watched them for an indecent amount of time watching television, eating a meal or having a family discussion.

    This made me uncomfortable, but I believe he did it because he didn’t have a normal life as a kid and he always wondered what the average family did when they were at home.”

    Their last home was in the small Californian town of Santa Paula, where they lived in an aircraft hangar while their house was renovated. He was perfectly content to spend his last days sitting in a wicker chair perched in front of our back garden shed. It was quiet and nobody bothered him exactly what he wanted.

    As McQueen became ever more frail and American doctors refused to operate for fear of killing a famous actor, he flew to Mexico to have a stomach tumour removed. He died shortly after the operation.

    Chad went to his bedside where he noticed an oddity. During his last months McQueen’s eyes had turned grey, but after his death they returned to their famous blue. He again became the Steve McQueen the world knew, his son said. I closed his eyes and kissed him on his forehead and said, ‘So long, Pop, I love you’.

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    minir

  2. #2
    R.I.P. MissTynker2's Avatar
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    Another nice share Larry...thank you again! While owning a service station down south some years back, two of my mechanics were actually Steves personal mechanics. No one touched his vehicles but them. He was a very loyal person in those respects, if he trusted you, and you had proved your worth, no one had best cross that line. Some of the stories those guys would come back with could not be put in print, and I remember laughing for days at some of them. He was in some parts as wild at home, and he was on the screen. I miss him too. He was indeed the finest of the fine in the acting department.
    Mystical Folding Minx

  3. #3
    R.I.P. 2015-05-13 minir's Avatar
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    Hi MissTynker

    Yes he led quite the life from all accounts MissTynker. Thanks for your input, i'm sure the tales told by them where great fun.

    --

    larry

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