Wild Bill Elliott (October 16, 1904 – November 26, 1965) was an American film actor. He specialized in playing the rugged heroes of B-Westerns, particularly in the Red Ryder series of films.
Elliott was born Gordon A. Nance in Pattonsburg, Missouri, the son of cattle broker Leroy “Roy” Whitfield Nance and his wife, the former Maude Myrtle Auldridge.
The young Nance grew up within twenty miles of his birthplace, most of his youth spent on a ranch near King City, Missouri. His father was a cattle rancher and commissioner buyer for the Kansas City stockyards. Riding and roping were part of Gordon Nance’s upbringing. He won first place in a rodeo event in the 1920 American Royal livestock show. He briefly attended Rockhurst College, a Jesuit school in Kansas City, but soon left for California with hopes of becoming an actor.