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Biography

Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (3)  | Trivia (12)  | Personal Quotes (1)

Overview (4)

Born in Ithaca, New York, USA
Died in Seattle, Washington, USA  (cardiac arrest following heart attack)
Birth NameAlexander Murray Palmer Haley
Height 5' 10½" (1.79 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Alex Haley served in the United States Coast Guard during the Second World War, Korean Conflict, and Cold War, and was the first African-American Coast Guardsman in the modern era to reach the rank of Chief Petty Officer. This paved the way for many other black men and women to rise into the senior enlisted ranks in the naval services. He also holds the distinction of being the first Coast Guardsman to be designated in the specialty rate of Journalist in recognition of his able service to the Coast Guard's and Navy's public affairs and history programs. This was a significant position of responsibility for shaping the public image of the Coast Guard, and reporting news within the service, and the broke the previous tradition of black sailors serving almost exclusively in menial jobs as cooks, stewards, and stevedores.

Alex Haley's personal motto in life was "Find the Good and Praise It."

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Paul Wright

Spouse (3)

Myra Lewis (September 1977 - 10 February 1992) ( his death)
Juliette Collins (29 September 1964 - 27 May 1972) ( divorced)
Nannie Branch (21 August 1942 - 28 March 1964) ( divorced)

Trivia (12)

Two men he interviewed, Black Muslim leader Malcolm X and American Nazi Party founder George Lincoln Rockwell, were both assassinated.
Several hundred copies of his book "Roots" had to be recalled from the publisher because they had been accidentally bound with covers meant for "Gone With The Wind".
The only person in the history of PLAYBOY magazine to appear both as an interviewer and a celebrity interviewee.
Had three children two daughters, and one son.
Godfather to Malcom X's daughter Attallah Shabazz
He may also be the only modern writer of note to have a warship named after him. The 283-foot Medium Endurance Cutter Alex Haley (WMEC-39) was commissioned on 10 July, 1999, and is homeported in Kodiak, Alaska. Ship's missions include fisheries patrol, search and rescue, law enforcement, environmental protection, and homeland security in the North Pacific.
While negotiating with Reader's Digest over their publication of Roots, he was flown out to the company headquarters on their private jet. While sipping the company's scotch and eating their complimentary nuts he thought to himself, "I guess it finally jelled!"
The most amusing rejection slip he got stated, "Thanks, but this doesn't jell for us."
While in the Coast Guard he submitted articles and short stories to various magazines, and posted his rejection slips on the walls of his cabin, and eventually in the galley when he ran out of wall-space in his own quarters.
In 1983 he announced his intention to write a book about the true people of the Smoky Mountains, tentatively titled "Sitting in the Appalachians". The book never materialized, however.
While researching his family in Africa, he was driven to an outlying village where his ancestor had come from. A crowd was waiting there, and they chanted in a language Haley didn't understand. When he asked his guide for a translation, the man replied, "They are saying, 'A son of the village has returned.'"
The characters Alex and Haley Dunphy on Modern Family are named after him.

Personal Quotes (1)

Nobody can do for little children what grandparents can do. Grandparents sort of sprinkle dust over the lives of little children.

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