This past Monday, NBC Universal held a press and media conference call with Martin Sheen. LOOKING4ANCESTORS was fortunate to be invited to attend this conference call. The first episode of Who Do You Think You Are?, Season 3, which aired February 3rd, featured Mr. Sheen.
During the course of the WDYTYA television episode it was easy to see Mr. Sheen's passion for his family's history. This was also apparent in the conference call interview. Mr. Sheen shared with us his first "wow moment". It was the reason why his mother, Mary Ann Phelan came to America. Mary Ann had been sent away for her own protection because of her brother, Michael Phelan's involvement in the Irish Civil War. She was meant to go back to Ireland when the fighting stopped, but never did. "And so it was a very, very satisfying moment for me to know that she too was involved", commented Mr. Sheen.
Through the research process, the discovery of the connection between Don Diego Francisco Suarez, and the young woman Don Diego had prosecuted for a moral crime in the 1700's was "the biggest surprise and the most intriguing part of the journey", said Mr. Sheen. Turns out Don Diego was Mr. Sheen's 4th great-grandfather, and the young woman was also Mr. Sheen's ancestor. Descendants of both Don Diego and the young woman married, and this couple was Mr. Sheen's great-grandparents!
When asked what is the number one reason someone should look into their family history, Mr Sheen replied "Well gosh it would be hard to place one reason at the top. If I had to and that would be all I would be given I would say just natural born curiosity should inspire one to look from whence we came in order to better prepare for where we are going.
So I would say that the measure of curiosity that one naturally feels is the best instinct to go with, embrace and get set for an amazing journey."
Well said Mr. Sheen.
Copyright by Kathryn Lake Hogan, 2012.