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Cheyenne Bodie
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"I figure there's a place for every man where he can kinda settle down, feel like he's come home...if he can only find it."

Played by

Clint Walker

Occupation

Itinerant cowboy, gunslinger, Army scout, sometime lawman, sometime outlaw and jack of all trades

Type of Character

Main Protagonist

Age

Adult

Family

Chief White Cloud (foster father)

Spouse

None

Origin

Wyoming

He has no people, no family, no ties, and no home. Cheyenne Bodie wanders the West helping others when he can, moving from job to job, romancing an occasional love and seeking justice either inside or outside the confines of the law.

Childhood

(Note: Specifics of Cheyenne's origin and childhood vary between episodes, but don't necessarily conflict. The following is a synthesis of those story elements. For specific episodes, see the category Cheyenne's Backstory.)

On a fateful Sept. 12 in Wyoming territory, settlers were murdered by Cheyenne indians during an attack on a wagon train. An infant boy was found among the remains and raised by Chief White Cloud, the man who ordered the attack. White Cloud named the boy Gray Fox because he was so solemn, "like a wise old fox".[1] He was given a cut on his right wrist leaving a scar that signified he was a blood brother to the tribe.[2] Cheyenne lived as White Cloud's son until he was 12.

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15-year-old Cheyenne

Cheyenne was then taken in and cared for by the Pierce family for about three years. Matriarch Mary Pierce taught him how to read and write. When he was 15, Cheyenne watched when masked men lynched Mary's husband Jeff in the family's front yard. With no desire to live among the men who murdered her husband, Mary decided to take her two children away and stay with relatives. She invited Cheyenne to come along, but he declined. After the Pierces departed on a stagecoach, Cheyenne was seen by men of the town riding back toward indian territory.[3]

Bodie was 18 when he left the tribe for good to seek his fortune among white men.[4] On the day he left the Cheyenne he crossed paths with Charlie Dolan, a kindly drunk who took Cheyenne under his wing for an unknown period of time.[5] As a young man, Cheyenne learned about the law serving as a "tenderfoot" deputy in Tombstone, Arizona under the mentorship of Sheriff Matt Ellis.[6]

Character

As a wanderer, Cheyenne Bodie prefers solitude to society, and nature versus civilization. He spends most of his nights under the stars.[7] He is respectful of traditions and religion, pays his debts, and is loyal to the many friends he's made in his wanderings across the western frontier after the American civil war. Cheyenne believes in law and order, but is willing to confront powerful people who abuse their authority. He is a veteran of many conflicts, though not as a uniform-wearing soldier, and has endured the dangers of war.

On most occasions Cheyenne will refuse a drink or smoke when offered, saying he prefers to eat.[5] He's not eager to attend dances or social gatherings, but when invited he cleans up well, can dance with the ladies and act the gentleman.[8]

Cheyenne is chivalrous and polite to women of all levels of society, be they wealthy ladies or humble farmers' wives. Honesty is a quality he both exhibits and admires; being called a liar is enough to make Cheyenne throw a punch in the direction of any man who dares utter the insult.

Skills

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Cheyenne Bodie demonstrates time and again his mastery of the quick draw and marksmanship. He once shot through the spade on a playing card at 30 yards.[9] On many occasions, Cheyenne uses that marksmanship to avoid killing, preferring to disarm his adversaries by shooting the weapons out of their hands. He rarely shoots first, unless he's in a showdown.

Cheyenne knows quite a bit about wrangling animals and men. He is regularly put in charge of both as foreman or trail boss. He once tended a herd of cattle through a winter season in the mountains by himself.[10] However, don't ask him to wrangle sheep. He's a cow man.[11] Bodie is a master at riding, roping and shooting while in the saddle, and spends much of his day seated on a horse.

In the wild, Cheyenne is an excellent tracker and scout which he attributes to his upbringing among the Cheyenne indians. He often works for the Army in a scout capacity. When lacking a gun, he can make his own wooden arrows and bows as weapons, and use them with deadly accuracy. He can maneuver a canoe and repair them when needed.[4]

Cheyenne has been known to gamble or play a hand of poker once in a while.[12] He's also adept playing chess.[13] There are few men who can beat him at indian wrestling, a.k.a. arm wrestling.

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Cheyenne understands many languages spoken by American indians, including the Sioux, the Arapaho, the Apache and the Cheyenne. He can also speak a small amount of Spanish.[14]

In the gentlemanly art of self-defense, size is definitely to Cheyenne's advantage. Six-foot-six and well muscled, Cheyenne holds his own in fights, often taking on more than one enemy at a time. He rarely throws the first punch, but usually throws the last. When they can't bring Bodie down with fists alone, his adversaries have to resort to chairs, bottles and anything else on hand to throw at him. If Cheyenne loses a fight it's usually due to a blunt object to the back of his head, or multiple foes overcome him at once.    

Careers

"I've tried just about everything outside of committin' murder and gettin' married." [15]

A man of strength, courage and a lightning-fast draw, Cheyenne Bodie found himself in as many jobs as there were stops in his travels.

Army Scout / Government Agent

Civilian Scout / Wagonmaster

Sheriff, Marshal, or Deputy

Bounty Hunter/Hired Gun

Ranch Foreman, Ranch Hand, Rancher

Cowboy, Trail Boss

Outlaw

Miner

Blacksmith

Freight Hauler

Fur Trapper

Spy, Undercover Agent

Misc.

Romances

There are plenty of lonely hearts in the West, and a man with the looks and build like Cheyenne can't help but catch the attention of the ladies. Too bad true love is hard to find. See Romance article for more.

Known Aliases

  • Cheyenne used the alias Eubanks when he traveled to Paso Alto to capture the outlaw and murderer Carl Thompson.Border Showdown
  • After breaking out of prison, Cheyenne went by the name of Jim Wade to avoid recapture on a murder conviction for which he was framed.The Last Train West
  • Cheyenne used the name Ace Black to hide his identity from a woman whose husband he killed in self defense.Wagon-Tongue North
  • Doc Johnson christened Cheyenne with the alias Tex Williams while the pair were on the run from the law. Ghost of the Cimmaron
  • Cheyenne tries to rescue a young man from a life of crime by pretending to be the boy's ex-convict father Wes McQueen. Reprieve
  • When trying to reclaim his identity from an imposter, Cheyenne used the alias Lionel.The Imposter
  • In an attempt to prevent a massacre, Cheyenne infiltrated the camp of the hostile indian tribes near the Little Bighorn River dressed as a Cheyenne indian and using the name Touch the Sky.Gold, Glory and Custer-Requiem
  • Hiding from the law and accused of being a criminal boss, Cheyenne used the alias John Smith while in the town of Cabriza to find the man who could clear his name. Counterfeit Gun
  • Cheyenne was tricked into believing he was John Abbot, the long-lost son and heir of a wealthy Wyoming businessman Lionel Abbot. Legacy of the Lost
References
  1. Legacy of the Lost
  2. White Warrior
  3. The Long Rope
  4. 4.0 4.1 War Party
  5. 5.0 5.1 Deadline
  6. The Law Man
  7. The Storm Riders
  8. The Brand
  9. Julesburg
  10. The Long Winter
  11. The Mutton Puncher
  12. Star In the Dust
  13. Johnny Bravo
  14. Pocketful of Stars
  15. Wagon-Tongue North