Don Cheadle

by ethnic on July 20, 2010

Don Cheadle

Birth Name: Donald Frank Cheadle, Jr.

Place of Birth: Kansas City, Missouri, United States

Date of Birth: November 29, 1964

Ethnicity: African-American

Don Cheadle is an American actor, writer, producer, and director. He was born to an African-American family.

Don plays James Rhodes / War Machine in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Don’s paternal grandparents were Lee Therman Cheadle (the son of William M. Cheadle and Maggie/Odie Lewis) and Cynthia Barnes (the daughter of Joseph Smith Barnes and Clennie Carroll). William was the son of Henderson Hence Cheadle and Mary Kemp. Maggie was the daughter of Henry Lewis and Caroline.

Don’s maternal grandparents were Basil Leon North, Sr. (the son of Horace P. North and Rachel S. Kenoly) and Louisa “Louie” Maretta Thompkins. Horace was the son of John Ralls. Rachel was the daughter of Myers Kenoly and Mary Mathilda, who were both born into slavery.

A DNA test whose results were displayed on the show African American Lives 2 (2008) stated that Don’s genetic ancestry is:

*81% Sub-Saharan African
*19% European

In his 2009 book about the show, In Search of Our Roots: How 19 Extraordinary African Americans Reclaimed Their Past, Henry Louis Gates, Jr. wrote that 45% of Don’s African DNA matches Benin and western Nigeria, including specifically the Ewondo, Bamileke, Masa, and Tikar people, 30% matches Upper Guinea (Senegal to Liberia), and 25% matches the Congo-Angola region.

photo by Prphotos

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

phaedra May 13, 2016 at 7:26 am

For an African, he does look older (usually blacks look younger than their age). He looks like he was born in 1956 or something.

fuzzybear44 May 13, 2016 at 11:21 pm

But he’s not African. Also some Black People just aren’t as lucky ,when it comes to their skin

GLXY March 23, 2016 at 4:13 am

CORRECTION: In his 2009 book based on the series, In Search of Our Roots: How 19 Extraordinary African Americans Reclaimed Their Past., Henry Louis Gates wrote on page 358 more details about Don Cheadle’s african ancestry:

45 % came from Benin and western Nigeria (including specifically Ewondo, Bamileke, Masa, and Tikar)

30 % came from Upper Guinea (Senegal to Liberia)

25 % came from Congo-Angola region

Forty-three percent of Don’s african ancestry comes from the area around Benin.

Malefactor September 21, 2015 at 6:42 pm

He looks very African, but his kids look very mixed.

stopit December 28, 2013 at 7:09 pm

He was born and raised here in America. He is African American! We are something different!

DGKRocks October 28, 2013 at 7:17 pm

CORRECTION. Cheadle’s ethnicity should be Cameroonian.

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