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Michele's
paternal grandparents, Tennessee Cochrane and Thomas Greene, were of Irish descent and came into Oklahoma in a covered wagon when it was still Indian territory, settling near Stigler. They were Okie farmers who ran a general store on the highway between Tulsa and Oklahoma City. Their ambitious eldest son, Bill Greene, heard about a little town in the Nevada desert where gambling was allowed and hit the road. He became one of the original owners of the Golden Nugget Casino on the first Las Vegas Strip. Micheles father, Roland, the youngest of the family, joined his brother upon his release from the army in the Korean war.

 
       Carmen, Dorita, Guadalupe       Grandma Tennie

On her mother's side, the Pallais family of Nicaragua, poets, priests and politicians joined with the family of Cecilia Dominguez of Chihuahua, Mexico. Beautiful, indomitable, independent women who flew in the face of tradition, the Dominguez girls made their way North to pursue their dreams. Cecilia's sister, stunning Beatriz Dominguez, would dance with Rudolph Valentino inThe Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse before a tragic, early death.

Michele's mother Dorita, an accomplished guitarist, singer and dancer, formed an all girl trio with her sisters, Carmen and Guadalupe, performing in the early days of television in Los Angeles with the legendary producer Klaus Landsberg.

"My mother and father met in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Golden Nugget, where she had booked a singing gig and he was the bar manager. He saw her from across a room and said to a friend 'Im going to marry that girl'...and he did.

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