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James MacArthur, adopted son of Helen Hayes?

jamesmacarthur helen_hayes

I was watching the 1970 Airport movie a few nights ago and it struck me again during the scenes featuring Helen Hayes: she reminds me so much of James “Danno” MacArthur. The official biographies all assert that Hayes is his adopted mother. Some suggest that her husband Charles MacArthur was the real father while some speculate on James actually being the son of MacArthur family friend Lillian Gish. I’m not agitated enough about this to conduct any serious snooping, and I understand that family secrets are family secrets. But I have to admit to being puzzled that none of the theories about his birth origins I’ve come across acknowledge MacArthur’s uncanny resemblance to his adopted mother nor any willingness to consider the possibility of her being his real mother. Does no one else see the resemblance?

2 Responses to “James MacArthur, adopted son of Helen Hayes?”

  1. Gayle Stewart Says:

    Glad to know I am not the only one who thought James looked like his mother.
    He was even short like her. I have always believed he was related to her biologically.

  2. Susan Says:

    I have always thought the same thing . They look alike and he was only 5ft 8 inches

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