Famous ex-messengers

So, you used to be a bike messenger, eh?

[This is an updated version of the original page from messengers.org ]

Being a messenger often is a jumping-off point for people, or perhaps just something they're doing while waiting for their real calling to take off... Some have gone on to be a bit more well-known, and some of these are more well-known than others...

Who That was then... ...This is now (or at least sometime after "then"...)
50 Cent
Rapper, Actor, Writer
Aleksandar Hemon
Author (Nowhere Man, Lazarus Project), Winner of McArthur Foundation Genius Grant
Andrew Carnegie Pittsburgh Industrialist
Bill Nighy London? Actor
Bob McLeod
Cyclist (1934 British Empire Champion, 1936 Olympics)
Cécile Gambin Toronto Cyclist (Downhill MTB Masters World Champion, 2000)
Charles Pelissier Paris Cyclist (French cyclocross champion, 1924-26)
Charles Terront Paris Cyclist (winner of the first Paris-Brest-Paris, 1891; early French champion cyclist)
Chuck D NYC? (1970s) Musician (Public Enemy)
Chuck Palahniuk Portland Author (Fight Club)
Claude Shannon
Petoskey, Michigan
founded digital computer and digital circuit design theory (Father of information theory)
Cordy Milne
4 time American Speedway Racing Champion
Dave Reid Toronto Ex-NHL (Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs) - used to messenger in the off-season
David Cross
Comedian, Actor (Arrested Development, Chipmunks)
Damon Wayons
Comedian, Actor (Living Color, My Wife & Kids)
Fausto Coppi Italy (1942) Cyclist (do I *really* need to list his palmares?)
Freddy Curci Toronto (late 80s) Musician (Sheriff, Alias) "When I'm with you"
Gene Autry
America's favorite singing cowboy, DUH!
Glenn Curtiss
Aviation Pioneer
Greg Wrangler NYC Actor
Graeme Obree Glasgow Cyclist (Former hour record holder)
GZA (Gary Grice)
NYC (~1992)
Rapper (Wu-Tang Clan)
Henry Miller Western Union, Brooklyn (1920-1924) Author
Ivonne Kraft Per Rad, Karlsruhe
Messenger World Champion (women) 1994-6, 1998
Cyclist (Olympian, 2004)
Jack Dempsey
Jack Milne
1937 World Speedway Racing Champion.
Janeane Garofalo Boston Comedienne, Actress, and outspoken Iraq war critic
Jacqueline Nearne
WWII  behind enemy lines
Special Operations Executive (SOE) during WWII
Jeffrey Wright
Actor (Manchurian Candidate, Casino Royale, Syriana)
Jeff Ballard NYC Musician (drummer w/ Chick Corea)
Jennifer Aniston NYC Actress - supposedly working on a film script based on her time messengering...
Jim Casey
Seattle (1907)
Founded the American Messenger Company (renamed UPS)
John Linnell NYC Musician (They Might Be Giants)
Kadeem Hardison
NYC (1980's)
Actor (Dwayne Wayne on A Different World)
Larry Romano NYC Actor
Lenny McGurr NYC Graffitti Artist (Futura 2000)
Liev Schreiber
Actor (Scream, X-Men Origins, Salt)
Lise de Baissac
WWII  behind enemy lines
Special Operations Executive (SOE) during WWII
Louison Bobet Paris? Cyclist (Tour de France winner, 1953-55; World Champion (road), 1954)
Malcolm McDowell
Actor (Clockwork Oranage, Caligula)
Marla Streb San Diego? Cyclist (Downhill MTB World Champion, 2003)
Max Bulla ? Cyclist (Austrian Champion (road), 1926 & 1927; Tour de Suisse winner, 1933)
Mary Katherine Herbert
WWII  behind enemy lines
Special Operations Executive (SOE) during WWII
MC Lyte
NYC (1989)
Rapper, Actor
Michael Pitt NYC Actor (Dawsons Creek, Boardwalk Empire, Silk, The Dreamers)
Mick Smiley London Comedian, Writer
Nancy Wake (the white mouse)
WWII  behind enemy lines
Special Operations Executive (SOE) during WWII
Nelson Vails Brooklyn (~1980) Cyclist (Olympic silver & US National Champion (sprint), 1984)
Odette Hallowes
WWII  behind enemy lines Special Operations Executive during WWII (The 1950 movie "Odette"  is about her)
Ottmar Liebert
Boston (1979)
Musician, Guitarist (solo, Kenny Loggins, Diana Ross, Celine Dion)
Paula Poundstone SF (~1980) Comedienne, Actress
Peter Stebbings
David "Puck" Rainey SF Celebrity (MTV, "The Real World")
Rachel Maddow
Washington DC
Journalist, TV host MSNBC
Rene Gagnon
Manchester, NH
Immortalized by Joe Rosenthal's WWII photograph Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima.
Ricky Powell
Photographer, Author, TV (Rappin with the Rickster), the 4th Beastie Boy
Rob Zombie NYC Musician (White Zombie,solo) Film production/soundtracks
Richard Ashcroft London? Musician (The Verve,solo)
Ron Sexsmith Toronto (walker) Singer/Songwriter
Sade London Singer/Songwriter
Scott Thunes SF Musician (bassist w/ Frank Zappa)
Sonya Butt (Sonia d'Artois)
WWII  behind enemy lines
Special Operations Executive in WWII. Included in the movie "Ten Days to D Day"
Stephen Adly Guirgis NYC? Playwright/Writer (Jesus Hopped The 'A' Train - messenger content)
Steve Brodie NYC Infamous Brookyn bookie and bridge jumper
Steve DeMarchi Toronto (late 80s) Musician (Sheriff, Alias)
Sven "Svängis" Johansson Stockholm (1920s) Cyclist (Swedish National Champion (multiple events), 1938)
TAKI 183 NYC Graffitti Artist (THE original tagger - the movie Turk 182 is homage to him)
Thomas Edison
Inveterate Tinkerer
Todd Louiso DC Actor
Vidal Sasson
London (WWII)
Hairstylist, Entrepreneur
William Saroyan Postal Telegraph, Fresno (1916-?) & SF (1926-?) Author (see The Human Comedy for messenger content)
W. W. Hodkinson
Ogden, Utah
aka the man who invented Hollywood (Founded Paramount Pictures )

The Maybes...

Spike Lee (Director - She's Gotta Have It, Do The Right Thing, etc - some w/ messenger content, possibly semiautobiographical)
Spike Jonze (Director - Being John Malkovich, various music videos; Founder - Girl Skateboards)
Jean Robic (Cyclist - Tour de France winner, 1947; French National Champion (cyclocross), 1945; World Champion (cyclocross), 1950)
several other professional cyclists throughout history - im working on it

Mess Archives.com