View Full Version : John Wayne Arm Bracelet

May 22nd, 2006, 10:48 AM
It is noticable in a lot of later John Wayne movies that he always wears a gold bracelet on his right arm.

Is this a piece of Indian jewellery or something for arthritis like a brass ring.

It looks golden and I have never heard or read of John Wayne suffering particularly from arthritis but it could have something to do with injuries
picked up from his days as a stuntman.

Any knowledge person out ther able to confirm it source or purpose.


May 22nd, 2006, 11:37 AM

The bracelet was given to Duke , David Jansen, Aldo Ray during the Green Berets.

Try www.montagnards.org (http://www.montagnards.org) or try ebay.

I believe over the years Duke had a gold one made, the thickness seems to change over the years.

May 22nd, 2006, 01:39 PM
Thanks Reasr

I think I remember hearing that story.

Thanks for information


May 5th, 2007, 01:49 AM
Hey there Duke, it is funny that you mention a bracelet that he wears. My husband has been telling me about one he saw him wearing (which he thought was silver) and has been asking me to get him one like it, but I can never notice one in the movies I see. (Or I just keep missing it). I would be quite interested if anyone could actually find a picture of it that I could see. He says the one he saw was not flat, but rounded and he said it had a flatten part on top (as if you could engrave something on it). I've never seen it, but he swears he did. Any help anyone has would be great! Thanks!

May 5th, 2007, 07:39 AM
There is an organization that works to raise money for the Montagnard people. If you remember the move The Green Beret, they were a group within Vietnamese culture that took probably a large portion of the killings like any country nowadays, one group is marked for ethnic cleansing. And these are the people we see mentioned in The Dukes movie. The bracelet he wore was probably given to him during the filming or after for helping the Montagnard people. I'd have to do more research,

But the bracelets are available in brass or sterling silver for $35 or $60 respectively. Here is an image of the bracelets. I'm guessing they are treated much like the POW bracelets of the Vietnam War.

Here is some info I found about the bracelet.

The Montagnard bracelet also came to be known in some circles as a "John Wayne bracelet" after The Duke visited Vietnam and was "brothered" by Montagnards while researching to make the movie "The Green Berets." He was so deeply impressed by his 'Yard brothers that he never took it off. You can spot it in all his movies made subsequent to The Green Berets (released in 1968). Word is, he wore it to his own funeral. RIP, brother Duke.Here is another site about some bracelets The Duke wore.

John Wayne Bracelets (http://www.jwplace.com/bracelet.html)

May 5th, 2007, 09:01 AM
Funny that this subject should come up. I just took delivery of the brass version this week. I ordered the brass version which I believe Duke had and they shipped it to me in 3 short days. I order it last Sunday and it was in my mail box Wednesday.

The quality is excellent. It's solid and it's hard to open up to get it around your wrist.

Here is a letter courtesy of Dick Bishop via Steve Sherman, RADIX Press, Houston, TX.

http://www.dukewayne.com/imagehosting/thum_2463c8d7e0b519.jpg (http://www.dukewayne.com/vbimghost.php?do=displayimg&imgid=413)

May 5th, 2007, 10:31 AM
The story goes when he was visiting the troops on a USO tour he was given a "Yard" bracelet by the Montagnard People of Vietnam. The silver bracelet was presented to him by a Montagnard Strike Force led by a U.S. Special Forces A-Team. The Montagnard bracelet is a symbol of friendship and respect.

Brass tarnishes so easily and can leave a ring on your wrist.

May 5th, 2007, 01:28 PM
Wow, this is awesome information guys! Thanks so much. I've gotta get one of those - in silver no doubt. :jump:

May 5th, 2007, 04:26 PM
He also wore a silver bracelet in memory of a US veteran killed in Vietnam. Is this the same or a different bracelet?


May 5th, 2007, 06:43 PM
Different bracelet... I read about the POW bracelet too. Here's the story I read:

John Wayne had 2 significant bracelets, both of which came out of the war in Vietnam.. They were symbols of remembrance, loyalty and patriotism. This is the story of Duke's bracelets.

We first learned of Capt. Stephen P Hanson while watching a TV special on John Wayne. The story was a very moving one-about a young soldier in the Vietnam war who sent his wife and young son a picture of himself with the caption "Me as John Wayne." That man along with others in his crew would never return home.

John Wayne wore Capt. Hanson's POW/MIA bracelet. John Wayne kept in touch through out his life with Capt.Hanson's wife and son. One letter Duke wrote to Hanson's boy when he was older said, "I wish you wonderful life. Just don't expect too much out of it and you'll have some wonderful years.

May 6th, 2007, 02:44 AM
Thanks Dakota

I knew I read that somewhere.


May 6th, 2007, 09:39 PM
Here's what was offered up in the John Wayne: American book by Randy Roberts & James Olson on pg 542, referencing the bracelet:

At Pleiku in the Central Highlands, he sat through a screening of Fort Apache with some Green Berets. Standing by watching the film were several dozen Montagnard tribesmen, most of whom did not speak English, but whom the Green Berets considered completely loyal to the American cause.
They could not understand any of the dialogue in the film, but whenever Indians attacked the U.S. Cavalry, the Montagnards instinctively cheered.
"They knew nothing about United States history," Wayne recalled with glee, "but they knew what they liked: brown people killing white people." For the rest of his life, Duke treasured, and wore on his left wrist, a gold bracelet the Montagnards gave him that night.Although he never wore it on the left wrist, I've only seen it on his right. The bracelet appears to be gold/brass colored on screen.

May 6th, 2007, 10:46 PM
So we have conflicting reports... brass or silver. Too bad there aren't color pictures of his wrist to see what it was for sure. I'll have to look through some of my books for colored photos. All I know is my statement came from a press release/story that took it's info from the National Archives and a POW/MIA organization.

May 7th, 2007, 04:21 AM
I always remember thw arm barcelet as being brass in colour. It is visible in the likes of Big Jake and Chsium.

The POW bracelet i think is silver


May 7th, 2007, 06:44 AM
All POW bracelets were silver, I used to wear one growing up. And then sent it back to him when he finally came home.

May 7th, 2007, 04:11 PM
I think the TV special is Standing Tall with James Arness narrating


August 8th, 2007, 03:01 PM
Howdy all...thanks for the bracelet information. I think these are really spectacular...

August 9th, 2007, 11:34 AM

Welcome to the John Wayne Message Board! We're happy to have you join us!

This has been a particularly interesting thread to read. Thanks, all, for your contributions.

Chester :newyear: and the Mrs. :angel1:

William T Brooks
August 19th, 2007, 12:41 PM
I had put this up on one of the other Pages about the Bracelets, But I think it belongs Here.



August 19th, 2007, 01:31 PM
Hi Parish

Warm Welcome to the Forum. Glad to have you with us



August 22nd, 2007, 12:03 PM
Hi Parish, welcome to the forum.

We have a great group of people that have a vast amount of knowledge. Come back often.

January 21st, 2008, 12:28 PM
I was a personal friend and business partner of John Wayne. I am new to this web site. This is my first posting. I have a photo of Duke and me in which you can clearly see his brass bracelet. Is there a way for me to post that picture. It was taken in 1971 in Newport Beach, CA at the site of where he and I planned to build (and did build) the John Wayne Tennis Club. I am the only person that Duke ever allowed to use his name in any business venture, of which I am very proud.

January 21st, 2008, 09:21 PM
Is there a way for me to post that picture.

If you are able to scan the photo (which will result in the best quality) into a file on your computer, you will be able to post it here. Please feel free to contact me if you need some assistance.

Chester :newyear:

January 23rd, 2008, 08:19 PM

If it is the picture on your website you can post the link.


January 28th, 2008, 08:57 AM
Yes I would definately like to see and hear more Ken...thanks

January 28th, 2008, 08:56 PM
Ken emailed me with the photo, I've attached the photo to Ken's original post above.

Thanks Ken for sharing your info with other JW fans.

January 28th, 2008, 09:14 PM
Thanks Kevin for posting that picture and to Ken, I'm sorry we couldn't chat the other night. I would have loved to hear your stories about Duke. GT

kilo 6
April 6th, 2008, 06:20 PM
Belated hello to you Ken Willig. I too would appreciate hearing any details of your interactions with Mr Wayne. Murray