Adrian Esposito on YouTube: Tom Laughlin: One Tin Soldier Rides Away
Arts & Entertainment

Actress who based 'Billy Jack' on growing up near Rosebud Reservation passes on




Delores Taylor, the co-creator and co-star of the popular Billy Jack series of films, passed away on Friday. She was 85.

Taylor grew up in Winner, a city near the Rosebud Sioux Reservation in South Dakota. Seeing how Indian people were mistreated by non-Indians prompted her to share her experiences, according to a 2011 interview with Adrian Esposito.

"Everything in that movie happened, more or less, to Delores when she was growing up in Winner, South Dakota," her husband, the late Tom Laughlin, who starred as Billy Jack, said in the interview.


In the films, Billy Jack was a mixed-race Vietnam war veteran from the Navajo Nation. Taylor's character was a non-Indian teacher named Jean Roberts.

Taylor was nominated for a Golden Globe for her work. She and her husband ended up making three Billy Jack films, which became popular due to their anti-war and anti-establishment sentiments.

"She was inspiring, a leader. A woman of incredible love, decency and kindness," a fan said in a Facebook group, where Taylor's daughter announced her passing.

Read More on the Story:
Delores Taylor, Star of ‘Billy Jack’ Movies of the 1970s, Dies at 85 (The Wrap March 26, 2018)
Delores Taylor, co-star of 'Billy Jack' films, dies at 85 (The Associated Press 27, 2018)