McQueen, Steven, Cpl | 11/7/1980 | Staff
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Steven Terrence McQueen was born on March 24, 1930, in Beech Grove, Indiana. One of the most popular film actors of the 1960s and '70s, Steve McQueen was known for his rugged good looks and cool, tough guy persona. Some of most memorable films include The Great Escape (1963), Bullitt (1968), The Thomas Crown Affair (1968) and The Getaway (1972).

McQueen barely knew his father, Terrence, who abandoned Steve and his mother, Julian, when he was only a few months old. More interested in her own life, Julian soon left Steve in the care of his great-granduncle Claude Thompson. He stayed with his great-grand-uncle on his farm in Slater, Missouri, for many years, hearing from and seeing his mother from time to time.

McQueen - Years - Mother - Los - Angeles

When McQueen was around 12 years old, he reunited with his mother after she remarried. They eventually moved to Los Angeles, California, where he got involved with some local gangs. He got caught stealing hubcaps from cars twice, and his mother decided to send him to reform school.

Feeling abandoned once again by his mother, McQueen was sent to the California Junior Boys' Republic in Chino. He initially struggled in this new environment, frequently breaking the rules and even escaping several times. Befriend by a member of the staff, McQueen eventually settled down. He later believed that the experience changed his life, saying, "I would have ended up in jail or something. I was a wild kid," according to My Husband, My Friend, by McQueen's first wife, Neile McQueen Toffel.

McQueen - Mother - Time - Boys - Republic

McQueen's mother never visited him during his time at Boys' Republic and rarely wrote to him. Despite his own hard feelings, McQueen agreed to join his mother in New York City in 1946. The 16-year-old arrived there to find out that his mother had put him up in another apartment instead...
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