Zachary Levi

Levi in 2012, photo by PR photos

Birth Name: Zachary Levi Pugh

Place of Birth: Lake Charles, Louisiana, U.S.

Date of Birth: September 29, 1980

Ethnicity: English, Irish, French, German, Welsh, Scottish, Northern Irish, Swiss, remote Dutch and French Huguenot

Zachary Levi is an American actor, comedian, singer, and author. He plays Shazam! in the DC Cinematic Universe, and has also featured in the films Big Momma’s House 2, Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, Thor: The Dark World, She Loves Me, Office Uprising, The Mauritanian, American Underdog, and, in voice role, Tangled and The Star (2017); on the shows Chuck, Heroes Reborn, Alias Grace, Rapunzel’s Tangled Adventure, and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel; as well as in Broadway roles.

Zachary was born Zachary Levi Pugh, and is the son of Susan Marie (Hoctor) and Darrell Pugh. His birth name is pronounced pew. He has English, Irish, French, German, Welsh, Scottish, Northern Irish, Swiss [Swiss-French and Swiss-German], and remote Dutch, ancestry. Several of his family lines go back to Colonial America.

While Zachary was born in Louisiana, he has no family ancestry in the state. He was raised in Ventura, California. His father is from Minnesota and his mother was raised in California.

Zachary uses his middle name as his stage name, as he believed “Pugh” was too unusual-sounding. A decade after he became a known actor, English actor siblings Toby Sebastian (born Sebastian Toby Pugh) and Florence Pugh, who are not related to Zachary, also became well-known; Florence kept the surname, while Toby, like Zachary, uses his first two names (though in reverse order).

Zachary is sometimes incorrectly believed to be Jewish, because of his middle/stage name Levi. He is not of Jewish heritage or religion, and is a devout Christian.

Zachary’s patrilineal line evidently traces back to Francois De Puy, a Huguenot from Calais, France, and to his Dutch wife, Geertje Willemse Van Boerum, who was from Amsterdam.

Zachary’s paternal grandfather was Alton Lester Pugh (the son of Herman Lester Pugh and Delila/Delliah Mae Lovin, whose family’s surname was originally Loving). Alton was born in Kansas. Herman was the son of Martin Shaner Pugh and Jane/Jennie Louise/Louisa/Louis Clason. Delila was the daughter of Robert Lee Lovin and Mary Ellen Montgomery.

Zachary’s paternal grandmother was Alice Maureen Repp (the daughter of Harry Orris Repp and Merle Marie Carruth). Alice was born in Wisconsin. Harry was the son of Jacob Orris/Oris Repp and Lucy Ann Thurber. Merle’s father was Wallace Bradley Carruth, whose father was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and whose mother was born in Ontario, Canada, to English parents. Merle’s mother was Elizabeth Evangeline “Lizzie” Bucher, whose parents, Heinrich Caspar “Henry” Bucher and Mary Ann Welchle, were Swiss.

Zachary’s maternal grandfather was Arthur Edward Hoctor, Jr. (the son of Arthur Edward Hoctor and Louise F./P. Labadie). Zachary’s grandfather Arthur was born in Ohio. Zachary’s great-grandfather Arthur was the son of Thomas Francis Hoctor, who was born in New York, to parents from Tipperary, Ireland, and of Mary Minnie A. McDonald, whose father, and maternal grandparents, were Irish. Louise was born in Ohio, the daughter of John Labadie, who was French, and of Alice Amelia Flory, who was born in Ohio, to French parents.

Zachary’s maternal grandmother was Patricia Lee “Pat” Jones (the daughter of John Ralph Jones and Juliet Louise Schenck). Patricia was born in Missouri. John was the son of Lewis R. Jones, whose father was Welsh and whose mother was German, and of Anna/Annie Coughey, whose parents were Irish. Juliet was the daughter of Henry B. Schenck and Wilhelmina M. Minnie/”Mamie” Kuehl, and her grandparents were all German.


Genealogies of Zachary Levi –

Obituary of Zachary’s paternal grandfather, Alton Lester Pugh –

Genealogies of Zachary’s paternal great-grandparents, Harry Orris Repp and Merle Marie Carruth –

Zachary’s maternal grandfather, Arthur Edward Hoctor, Jr., on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Zachary’s maternal grandmother, Patricia Lee Jones, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Zachary’s maternal great-grandfather, John Ralph Jones, on the 1910 U.S. Census –


Curious about ethnicity

46 Responses

  1. anen87 says:

    He looks just like Tom Ellis who is also English & Welsh…

  2. andrew says:

    On his paternal grandma’s “Reep” line he is distantly related to Jim Morrison.

  3. andrew says:

    Zachary’s patrilineal line can be traced back to his 9th great-grandfather, Francois De Puy, an Huguenot from Calais, in North France, and to his Dutch wife, Geertje Willemse Van Boerum, who was from Amsterdam. The surname was anglicized to Pew, and later Pugh.

    There’s an ancestor named Lucy INU, wife of William B. Loving, which is quite obscure. Their son is listed as White, though,

  4. Jacklyn 224 says:

    Agreed he looks so Jewish or a multiracial white man, but turns out his a northwest euro mutt.He looks way to exotic for that ethnic mix.

  5. madman says:

    Wallace’s father was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and his mother was born in Ontario, Canada, to English parents.

    Mary Minnie A. McDonald’s father was Irish and her mother’s parents were Irish.

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