An enduring figure of the American film industry, John Wayne also, at times, served as an outspoken fan of Lucchese during his five-decade tenure in Hollywood.
In 1976 he posed with company owner and personal friend Sam Lucchese for an Esquire magazine article entitled "Boots Fit for a Duke," a nod to Wayne's childhood nickname.
(Wayne once said of his nickname, Duke, "There's been a lot of stories about how I got to be called Duke. One was that I played the part of a duke in a school play — which I never did. Sometimes, they even said I was descended from royalty! It was all a lot of rubbish. Hell, the truth is that I was named after a dog!")
And during the Christmas season of 1977, Lucchese archives show that Sam Lucchese sent what Wayne called his "best Christmas present" of the year — a brand new pair of cowboy boots.
We at Lucchese are humbled by Duke's early support and look forward to spending a few chilly holiday evenings watching the distinct, rugged actor in classics like The Quiet Man and True Grit.