Tom Sizemore

Days Of The Dead Los Angeles Convention - Day 2

Sizemore in 2013, photo by PrPhotos

Birth Name: Thomas Edward Sizemore, Jr.

Date of Birth: November 29, 1961

Place of Birth: Detroit, Michigan, U.S.

Date of Death: March 3, 2023

Place of Death: Burbank, California, U.S.

Ethnicity: English, German, Scottish, around one eighth African-American, French, Irish, distant Native American [Cherokee or Creek], remote Welsh

Tom Sizemore was an American actor and producer. His roles included the films Born on the Fourth of July, Blue Steel, Point Break, Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man, Passenger 57, Heart and Souls, True Romance, Striking Distance, Wyatt Earp, Natural Born Killers, Strange Days, Devil in a Blue Dress, Heat, The Relic, Saving Private Ryan, Enemy of the State, Bringing Out the Dead, Red Planet, Black Hawk Down, Pearl Harbor, Big Trouble, Dreamcatcher, and Paparazzi, and the series Twin Peaks.

Tom was the son of Judith (Schannault), who was on an ombudsman staff, and Thomas Edward Sizemore, a lawyer and professor. His brother, Aaron Sizemore, was a writer.

His European ancestry included English, German, Scottish, French, Irish, and remote Welsh. In his autobiography, By Some Miracle I Made It Out of There: A Memoir, 2013, Tom stated that his maternal grandfather was the illegitimate son of a white plantation owner, John Oliver Chennault, and of a Native American woman, Nina. Similarly, in 2011, Tom stated that his maternal grandfather had African-American ancestry. Tom’s grandfather’s mother, Nina/Effie Tompkins, was African-American. People of African-American heritage sometimes described themselves as being of Native American descent. Tom’s paternal Sizemore family likely also had distant Native American, Cherokee or Creek, ancestry.

Tom had two children with Janelle McIntire.

Tom’s patrilineal line can be traced to Francis Sizemore, who was born, c. 1618, in London, England.

Tom’s paternal grandfather was Blevins Sizemore (the son of Wilburn/Wilber B. Sizemore and Margaret L. “Peggy” Asher). Tom’s grandfather Blevins was born in Kentucky. Wilburn was the son of Blevins Brock Sizemore and Rebecca Sizemore. Margaret was the daughter of David Wilkerson Asher and Nancy Jane/Patsy Sizemore.

Tom’s paternal grandmother was Vina Marie King (the daughter of James Garfield King and Nancy Jones). Vina was born in Kentucky. James was the son of Henry M. King and Paralee/Parlee Kelly/Kelley. Nancy was the daughter of John Jones and Mary.

Tom’s maternal grandfather was Samuel/Sam Schannault (the son of John Oliver Shannault/Chennault/Chenault and Nina/Effie Tompkins). Samuel was born in Georgia. John was white, and was a prominent political figure and planter in Georgia. He was the son of John Oliver/Nelson Chennault/Chenault and Sarah Elizabeth “Lizzie” Barksdale McClendon/McLindon. Tom’s great-grandmother Effie was black, the daughter of Sam/Sim Thompkins and Odesa/Odessa Norman.

Tom’s maternal grandmother was Mildred Dean Hayes (the daughter of Robert Leslie Hayes and Lonetta “Nettie” Anderson). Mildred was born in Tennessee. Robert was the son of Richard A. Hayes and Elizabeth Ann Terry. Lonetta was the daughter of Henry Davis Anderson and Josephine “Josie” Exum.

Sources: Tom’s paternal grandfather, Blevins Sizemore, on the 1920 U.S. Census –
Blevins Sizemore on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Genealogy of Tom’s paternal great-grandparents, Wilburn/Wilber B. Sizemore and Margaret L. “Peggy” Asher –

Genealogy of Tom’s paternal great-grandfather, Wilburn/Wilber B. Sizemore –

Genealogy of Tom’s paternal great-great-grandfather, Blevins Sizemore –

Tom’s mother on the 1950 U.S. Census –

Genealogies of Tom’s maternal grandparents, Samuel/Sam Schannault and Mildred Dean (Hayes) Schannault –

Obituary of Tom’s maternal grandfather, Samuel/Sam Schannault –

Tom’s maternal great-grandfather, John Oliver Shannault/Chennault/Chenault, on the 1910 U.S. Census –

Death record of Tom’s maternal great-grandfather, John Oliver Shannault/Chennault/Chenault –

Tom’s maternal great-grandmother, Nina/Effie Tompkins, on the 1900 U.S. Census –
Nina/Effie Tompkins on the 1920 U.S. Census –

Obituary of Tom’s maternal grandmother, Mildred Dean (Hayes) Schannault –

Genealogies of Tom’s maternal great-great-grandparents, Henry Davis Anderson and Josephine “Josie” Exum –

Genealogy of Tom’s maternal great-great-great-great-grandfather, William Henry Cantrell –

34 Responses

  1. Mr. Postman says:

    According to this genetic study, Sizemore is a Melungeon name and they are the only Melungeons to have Native American in their DNA:

    • follers says:

      The first Sizemore, at least in Tom’s line, came from England. So the proposition is with whichever specific Sizemore ancestor along the way’s Melungeonesness.

      • Mr. Postman says:

        It’s possible considering his line is from Kentucky. But yeah, we don’t know. Would be cool if it turned out he was African-American and Indigenous on both sides.

  2. Dar says:

    Such a great actor. What a shame.

  3. MichaelWHat says:

    RIP :(

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