Reason Mr. T Wore Gold Chains Around His Neck And Heartbreaking Reason He Stopped

Mr. T had a reason for wearing his iconic gold chains - but he also had a heartbreaking reason to stop wearing them.
Credit: Alamy

Many people have wondered over the years about Mr. T’s choice when it comes to donning his iconic gold chains and the reason why he stopped wearing them.

Mr. T, who was born Laurence Tureaud, is an American actor and when you mention him, several things come to mind: his role as B. A. Baracus in The A-Team, his famous catchphrase “I pity the fool” and his gold chains.

But not many people know that there was a reason behind his extensive jewellery-wearing habit and that eventually, he stopped wearing them.

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The actor started amassing his collection of chains during his time working as a bouncer.

In his autobiography published in 1984, ‘Mr. T: The Man with the Gold’, the star revealed that some of the chains would be left behind at the end of the night, and he decided to hold onto them.

While he would have been willing to return them to their rightful owners if anyone had come forward, he also acknowledged that very few would have had the courage to do so – probably due to his tough guy persona.

Mr. T
Mr. T no longer wears his gold chains. Credit: @officialipitythefool/Instagram

His role as a bouncer caught the attention of Sylvester Stallone when he saw Mr. T on a television show named America’s Toughest Bouncer. This led to Sylvester Stallone casting him as Clubber Lang in Rocky III.

At the height of his fame, Mr. T reportedly wore over $300,000 worth of gold on his neck – and it apparently took him an hour to put it on.

In his book, the actor and former military man revealed why wearing gold was so significant to him.

He penned: “The reason why I wear gold – I wear gold for three reasons. One, when Jesus was born, three wise men came from the east: one brought frankincense, one brought myrrh, the other one brought gold.

“When my ancestors came from Africa, they were shackled by our neck, our wrists, and our ankles in steel chains. I’ve turned those steel chains into gold to symbolise the fact that I’m still a slave, only my price tag is higher.”

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Mr. T’s reason for his decision to part ways with the gold was clarified in an interview with the New York Daily News.

He revealed that he abandoned his iconic jewellery due to the devastating impact of Hurricane Katrina impact, which claimed the lives of over 1,800 people and caused $125 billion in damages.

The actor stated: “It would be a sin against God for me to wear my gold when so many people lost everything.”

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Written by Ryan Wilks

Ryan is a former content editor at IGV who specialises in celebrity and entertainment news. He has a degree in Magazine Journalism and Production from the University of Gloucestershire. He previously worked as a social media editor for Reach PLC’s national brands including Daily Star, Daily Express, OK! and The Mirror.