A Square for the “King of Cool”

Steve McQueen's son Chad holds up a sign at the dedication of the square for his father, while L.A. City Councilman Tom LaBonge looks on.

For a woman to board a plane in England on her own and come all the way to L.A. just to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the death of actor Steve McQueen, surely means she has been a lifelong fan of the “King of Cool,” right?

“Actually, only four-and-a-half months,” laughs Teresa Peacock, a 59-year-old administrative assistant from outside London, with a delightful British pronunciation of “hoff” for the word “half.”

“You see, I always knew about Steve McQueen, but I never really paid attention until one day recently when I was bouncing around the channels looking for something when I chanced upon The Magnificent Seven. I asked, “Where have you been?””

I had written a DD post about the same time on McQueen’s last years, which were spent in the city of Santa Paula northwest of L.A. Teresa happened to catch it online, and we have been trading emails ever since. Yesterday, we finally met at the dedication of “Steve McQueen Square” at the corner of Highland Avenue and Santa Monica Boulevard in Hollywood.

Teresa arrived at the square in style in a 1968 Mustang owned by Mike Farrell (not that Mike Farrell) from Redondo Beach. She had hooked up the sweet ride through a mutual friend who hosts a McQueen fan-site in Germany. The car was one of a long procession of Mustangs, Porsches, and motorcycles that motored through Hollywood, briefly pausing at McQueen’s star on Hollywood Boulevard, before stopping at the newly-minted square.

Teresa Peacock (right) chats wife McQueen's first wife, Neile Adams McQueen.

The brief dedication ceremony was led by L.A. City Councilman Tom LaBonge and was attended by several McQueen family members, including his son Chad and his first wife Neile Adams McQueen. Dozens of fans milled about the high-performance vehicles that filled the lot of a gas station. The McQueens were photographed with most everyone in the crowd and were kind enough to Sharpie everything placed in front of them. This included the back of the T-shirt that Teresa wore, which sported the “JJZ 109” license plate from McQueen’s Mustang from Bullitt on the front.  

This is Teresa’s first real trip to Los Angeles and most of her other scheduled stops this week will be to other McQueen-related events, including a special screening of Bullitt on Thursday night at the Arclight Hollywood Theater.

The McQueen family.

Are there any non-McQueen sites she plans to see in L.A.?

“I’m going to Santa Monica to the pier because I understand they have a roller coaster, and I love roller coasters. Then on to Venice Beach to see the men. I have got to see the men!”

We lost Cool’s King thirty years ago, but we may have just discovered a suitable queen.

Teresa with Mike Farrell alongside Mike's 1968 "Bullitt"-style Mustang.

About deadwrite

Freelance writer, film historian, taphophile View all posts by deadwrite

3 responses to “A Square for the “King of Cool”

  • Brandy

    I would hope you might have gotten a chance to talk to Chad. He is super nice, and a pretty good actor in his own right.

  • deadwrite

    Hi Brandy – Actually we did speak with Chad, and yes, he is super nice. We chatted for awhile about his father’s ranch in Santa Paula recently selling. He is very approachable and we didn’t want to take up too much of his time since everyone else wanted to chat with him as well. Wish we could have talked longer.

  • june wright

    Ow wow, you lucky bird!!! – I bet he is still telling all of his showbiz friends he met Teresa Peacock, THE Teresa Peacock. Fast cars and fast men, is there no changeing you?

    This made me smile to see you so cool at meeting and greeting the rich & famous.

    June XX

    Friends with THE Teresa Peacock.

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