The area in front of Mann's Chinese Theater is where you'll find the "footprints" of the stars. I've been there before and taken pictures of many of them. But on this visit, I only took the picture of one set of famous footprints; those of my hero, John Wayne.
Those of you who have been reading my journal for a long time, already know that I not only met John Wayne but had lunch with him in March of 1955. My uncle worked as a still photographer for the movie studios . We were in southern California (one of the very few family vacations we had when I was growing up) and he took me to work with him one day. John Wayne and Lauren Bacall were filming the movie "Blood Alley" (a very good movie I might add) and my uncle made sure I had 8 x 10 glossy pictures of that special day. Lauren Bacall sat for the picture & got up and walked away but John Wayne was different. He chatted with this timid 13 year old, asking about school, etc. Then he asked me if I was hungry and said "let's have some lunch." Soon box lunches appeared and he along with my uncle, myself and some other movie people were soon seated at a big round table near the set, eating sandwiches, etc. I remember sitting next to him, but I has in such a fog, that's about all I remember.
So you can see why, even after all these years, I have a special place in my heart for this man. He was so genuine and friendly, I will never forget him. It was an honor to once again visit his special spot in front of Mann's Chinese Theater.