Frank Salsedo

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Frank Salsedo
Born Frank Sotonoma Salsedo
(1929-05-20)May 20, 1929
Santa Rosa, California, U.S.
Died July 3, 2009(2009-07-03) (aged 80)
Manteca, California, U.S.
Other names "Grey Wolf"
Occupation Actor / Acting coach & teacher
Years active 1975-2002

Frank Sotonoma "Grey Wolf" Salsedo (May 20, 1929 - July 3, 2009) was a Native American actor. He was often cast in smaller parts centered on his Native American heritage.[1]

As an actor, Salsedo has performed in movies such as The Ghost Dance, released in 1980 in which he played Ocacio, Magic in the Water (1995) playing Uncle Kipper, Across the Great Divide (1976) in which he played Mosa, Creepshow 2 (1987) in which he played Ben Whitemoon (segment: Old Chief Wood'nhead), Journey to Spirit Island (1988) as Hoots and Best of the Best 2 (1993) in which he played Charlie.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Frank Sotonoma Salsedo[3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10] was born on May 20, 1929 in Santa Rosa, California to Helen and Gilbert Salsedo. He had five brothers (Delano, Lovedale Richard, Gilbert, Hal and Kenny) and six sisters (Helen Rose, Jane, Lola, Gertrude, Vera and Donna). He graduated from the Sherman Institute and then enlisted in the United States Navy. After his discharge he became a CPA and graduated from Sawyer's Business College.[1][11]


Salsedo was the President of Jay Silverheels Acting School in Los Angeles, where he found his dream job as an actor. As a member of the Screen Actors Guild he made over 50 movies and helped other Native Americans in the film industry.[1][11]

He portrayed the role of White Bird in the 1975 television movie, I Will Fight No More Forever.[12] Salsedo appeared in one episode of the short-lived 1977 series, Code R.[13] One of his earliest roles in film was as Ocacio in The Ghost Dance (1980).[14]

Salsedo played Charlie in Best of the Best 2 (1993).[15] In 1995, Salsedo played Uncle Kipper in Magic in the Water.[16][17] The next year, he portrayed Nakki in North Star (1996), opposite James Caan.[11] In 1998, he appeared alongside Chris Farley and Matthew Perry in Almost Heroes.[18] He even appeared in 6 episodes of Walker, Texas Ranger.[19]

Personal life and death[edit]

Salsedo was the hereditary chief of the Wappo tribe of Sonoma County, California.[11] At the time of his death, Salsedo, along with the Mishewal Wappo Tribe, was involved in a federal recognition lawsuit.[20]

Salsedo was married to Leta Stephens and they had two daughters, Lynette and Eugenia, and two sons, Ramon and Rick. He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Delano, his sister Helen Rose Hageman and his wife.[1]

In addition to his alias, "Grey Wolf",[1] Salsedo also had an additional nickname, "Beverly Hills".[9][10]

Salsedo died on July 3, 2009 in Manteca, California at the age of 80. He is survived by: his sisters Jane Couey, Lola Garcia, Gertrude Merrifield, Vera Guillory, Donna Walters; brothers Lovedale Richard, Gilbert, Hal, and Kenny Salsedo; children Lynnette Holmes, Ramon, Rick, and Eugenia Salsedo; grandchildren Mario Reno, Jasmine and Ryan Salsedo, Nicholas Noah; great-grandchildren Kailynn and Quinn Reno; nieces, nephews, and cousins.[1][11]



Year Film Role Notes
1976 Across The Great Divide Mosa Credited as Frank F. Salsedo
1979 Star Trek: The Motion Picture Enterprise Crewmember Uncredited
1980 The Ghost Dance Ocacio US video box title was Ghost Dance
1985 When Nature Calls Gray Wolf aka The Outdoorsters
1987 Creepshow 2 Ben Whitemoon (segment "Old Chief Wood'nhead")
1988 Journey to Spirit Island Hoots
1993 Best of the Best 2 Charlie
1994 Windrunner Huck's Father Voice
1995 A Boy Called Hate Ted Credited as Frank Sotonoma Salsedo
Magic in the Water Uncle Kipper
1996 North Star Nakki
1998 Almost Heroes Old Indian
1999 Grizzly Adams and the Legend of Dark Mountain Silver Bear


Year Film/Series Role Notes
1975 I Will Fight No More Forever White Bird
1976 The Quest Indian Chief Episode "The Longest Drive"
1977 Code R Willie Episode 1-1
1979 CBS Afternoon Playhouse Joey and Redhawk Credited as Frank Sotonoma Salsedo
1979 Centennial Sam Lopez Episode "The Scream Of Eagles"
1982 House Calls Episode "It Ain't Necessary to Sew"
1982 The Legend of Walks Far Woman Many Scalps Made-for-TV movie
1983 Buffalo Bill Episode "Buffalo Bill and the Movies"
1984 The Mystic Warrior Sinte Made-for-TV movie
1990 Northern Exposure Anku Episode "Brains, Know-How and Native Intelligence"
1990 Quantum Leap Grandfather: Mr. Washakee (Kinu) Episode "Freedom, November 22, 1970"
1993 Pickett Fences Chippewa chief, "Bill" Episode "Rights Of Passage" April 15, 1993
1995-2001 Walker, Texas Ranger White Eagle Various episodes: "Days Past"
1996 Mighty Morphin Alien Rangers True of Heart 1 episode
1996 Power Rangers Zeo Sam Trueheart 4 episodes
1998 JAG Johnny Blackhorse Episode "The Return of Jimmy Blackhorse"


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Frank Fernando "Grey Wolf" Salsedo Obituary: View Frank Salsedo's Obituary by Press Democrat". Retrieved 2012-01-12. 
  2. ^ Frank Salesdo
  3. ^ Bama, James. "Portrait Of A Sioux". Retrieved 22 November 2015. 
  4. ^ Stafford, Nikki (2004). Once Bitten: An Unofficial Guide to the World of Angel. ECW Press. ISBN 9781550226546. 
  5. ^ Muir, John Kenneth (2004). The Encyclopedia of Superheroes on Film and Television, 2d ed. McFarland. ISBN 9780786437559. 
  6. ^ Pitts, Michael R. (2012). Western Movies: A Guide to 5,105 Feature Films, 2d ed. McFarland. ISBN 9780786463725. 
  7. ^ "Raquel Welch Stars as Indian in World Premiere Drama on CTV". 26 May 1982. Retrieved 22 November 2015. 
  8. ^ "Walker, Texas Ranger". The Ledger. 12 October 1997. Retrieved 22 November 2015. 
  9. ^ a b Frank Salsedo biography at The New York Times
  10. ^ a b Frank Salsedo Overview at Turner Classic Movies
  11. ^ a b c d e "Remembering Frank Salsedo". 20 May 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2015. 
  12. ^ Benbow, Charles (14 April 1975). "Heroic stand for freedom". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved 22 November 2015. 
  13. ^ Armstrong, Stephen B. (2011). Andrew V. McLaglen: The Life and Hollywood Career. McFarland. ISBN 9780786486700. 
  14. ^ Hilger, Michael (2015). Native Americans in the Movies: Portrayals from Silent Films to the Present. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 9781442240025. 
  15. ^ Monush, Barry; Willis, John (2000). Screen World 1994. Hal Leonard Corporation. ISBN 9781557832016. 
  16. ^ Monush, Barry; Willis, John (1997). Screen World 1996. Hal Leonard Corporation. ISBN 9781557832528. 
  17. ^ Berry, Mark F. The Dinosaur Filmography. McFarland. ISBN 9781476606743. 
  18. ^ Monush, Barry; Willis, John (2000). Screen World 1999. Hal Leonard Corporation. ISBN 9781557834119. 
  19. ^ "Season 6, Episode 4 Lucas, Part 2". TV Guide. 18 October 1997. Retrieved 22 November 2015. 
  20. ^ "Mishewal Wappo Tribe waits for decision in recognition lawsuit". 26 February 2015. Retrieved 4 August 2015. 

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