10 Lesser-Known Facts About Lawrence Tureaud aka Mr. T
6 After working as a bouncer, he started a career as a bodyguard for celebrities such as Muhammad Ali, Steve McQueen, Michael Jackson, etc. He used to charge $3,000 to $10,000 per day.
After breaking up numerous fights as a club’s bouncer, Mr. T entered into something more meaningful. Yes, he became a bodyguard for which his qualities were more suited. This career continued for him for about 10 years. During this time, he offered protection to nine welfare recipients, sixteen prostitutes, eight bankers, five preachers, four store owners, and ten school teachers among others.
But as soon as his reputation began to grow in this field, he received contracts to protect five models, seven clothes designers, three politicians, six athletes, seven judges, and forty-two millionaires. Some of his clients included Muhammad Ali, Steve McQueen, Michael Jackson, Leon Spinks, Joe Frazier and Diana Ross. Moreover, he used to charge $3,000 to $10,000 per day depending on the risk-rate and location of the client.(source)
7 During his bodyguarding days, Mr. T was paid to assassinate someone. He refused and tried to warn the victim but was too late.
Mr. T’s reputation as a bodyguard grew so much that he started getting offers for other commissions such as tracking teenagers who have run away from home, locating people who were missing, collecting payments by force, and of course, assassination.
He was once offered $75,000, anonymously, to assassinate a target. He received a file in the mail with details related to the hit, along with an advance of $5,000. In Mr. T’s words. “He offered me $75,000 to kill his friend. The last envelope and letter contained a round-trip airline ticket, first class, United. Plus there was $5,000 wrapped in a little package, fifty and hundred dollar bills. I tell you the honest truth when I saw that money I didn’t believe it was real.”
Mr. T refused the offer and even tried to warn the person who was targeted. But he was too late and the guy died in a car accident.(source)
8 Even though he was baptized as a child, Mr. T became a born-again Christian after he landed the part in Rocky III and credits his success to the generous donations he made to his church.
Mr. T was baptized as a child when he was four years old. But, as with all kids, he never grasped the concept thoroughly. Later, as he grew older, he started deeply accepting Jesus Christ. He got re-baptized in 1977.
Before he got famous, Mr. T used to take part in a contest called the “Toughest Bouncer in America.” As soon as he started training for the contest, he called up his pastor, Reverend Henry Hardy of Cosmopolitan Community Church and said, “Pastor Hardy, they’re having a contest, and when I win this contest I’m going to give you the money, so you can buy food and clothes for less fortunate people in the community.”
Mr. T won the contest for two consecutive years and, true to his words, he donated over $10,000 to the church. Then he landed the part in Rocky III. Mr. T believes that getting the part in the movie was a blessing for all the good work that he had done towards the church. (source)
9 In 1987, he angered the residents of Lake Forest, Illinois by cutting down more than a hundred oak trees on his estate. The national media referred to the incident as “The Lake Forest Chain Saw Massacre.”
In May 1987, Mr. T reportedly chopped down hundreds of trees at his Lake Forest mansion. Apparently, he was suffering from an allergy of some kind. But while it felt like the right way to deal with his allergies, his actions brought outrage among the town’s residents. Actually, Mr. T’s actions were a complete violation of an unwritten code of aesthetics of the beautiful town.
Angry residents called it ”The Lake Forest Chain Saw Massacre.” In the end, however, the residents and the city officials had to agree that Mr. T has the right to do anything on his own estate. (source)
10 Mr. T stopped wearing this trademark gold chains in 2005 after seeing people who had lost everything to Hurricane Katrina.
When someone talks about Mr. T, the first things that come to mind is his signature style – the unique hairstyle and the gold chains. But since 2005, Mr. T gave up wearing his trademark gold chains after he helped with the cleanup of the destruction made by Hurricane Katrina. In his words, “As a Christian, when I saw other people lose their lives and their land and property… I felt that it would be a sin before God for me to continue wearing my gold.” I felt it would be unnecessary and disrespectful to the people who lost everything, so I stopped wearing my gold.”(source)
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