Upon graduating from high school in Denver in the late70’s, he took a Trailways bus to Hollywood with hopes and dreams of making it as film and television actor. However, he upon arriving in California, Nay’s dreams of quick success as an actor was met with lots of disappointments, pitfalls and let downs.
He refused to go back home a failure, Nay became homeless in downtown Los Angeles, what is known as Skidrow. He slept many nights on cardboard boxes, Greyhound and Trailways bus station toilet stalls, in cheap hotel basement laundry rooms and in the Union Rescue Mission.
He kept his suitcase of clothes in a bus station pay locker and showered where he could. He says, “I was homeless, but I did not look homeless. I kept myself clean.”
Nay eventually did some day to day labor jobs such as unloading big trucks for cash. When there were no day to day jobs, Nay would often panhandle money for food to survive. Eventually, he rented out a U.S Post Office box to have an address. At times, his parents and grandparents would send him small amounts of money.
While still homeless, Nay would often hang around movie and t.v sets such as Baretta and Kojak filming in Skidrow, hoping to get on as a background extra. A man named Edward Vandell, an extra casting director took a liking to Nay and cast him as an extra in a movie titled “Mac Arthur Park”. But since the work was not steady, he was still homeless.
One day he approached a man in an Army class A dress uniform for spare change, the man (a recruiter) told him how he could get him off of Skidrow with a real job, a place to live and decent money.
That was the day, the Army changed Nay’s life. Being strong willed and determined not give up his dreams of an acting career, he only allowed the recruiter to convince him to sign up for two years instead of all six years. Nay did two years in a signal unit with an MOS of 05B (radio teletype operator).
Seeing that being full time Army was killing his dreams of being an actor, he got out after two years and did the rest of his time as an active reserve soldier to allow him to continue his dreams of acting. It was the army that got Nay off the streets of Skidrow and into a decent life. Once in the reserves, he was reclassified into the MOS of 71L (admin) which eventually became 42A.
After many years of being in the Army reserves and with lots of stage acting credits in and around Los Angeles and a few film roles, Nay decided that he needed a better income.
Once again it was the Army that gave him the chance to be all he could be and still have a little flexibility to pursue his acting career. One of the happiest days in Nay's life was when he became a member of Actors Equity and Screen Actors Guild in 1981.
Nay joined the AGR program which is being on active duty, but only working with the Army reserves units.
He got an agent and went on auditions and landed a few small supporting roles. Nay wrote his first screenplay titled “Nights on Broadway”semi based on his life and times in the Skidrow section of Los Angeles, which was optioned by an independent producer by way of his former agents, Shapiro & Lichtman in the nineties.
Nathaniel has written several scripts for film and television pilots which are all registered with the U.S Copyright office. Writing is his way of creating acting roles for himself. His current screenplay is titled “Children of The World”,a youth action adventure/espionage story. Most (Not all) of Nay’s acting credits can be seen on imdb.com
Nathaniel also speaks, read and write Spanish (self-taught) well and appeared in a small supporting role in an all Spanish telenovela (soap opera) titled “Acorralada” in 2007. He speaks basic Hebrew about 3rd grade school level (self-taught) and he plans to become to become fluent. He was named after his beloved grandfather, Nathaniel which is a Hebrew name and in the Holy Bible. Nay also plans to visit Israel in the future.
I am a character actor, age range 50-60. I am also a practicing martial artist. I thank God and Yeshua that at my age, I can still do the splits. Nathaniel’s three favorite quotes are: 1. Real passion is doing a job that you love and not just what pays your debts" by Yesrod 2. “Failure is Not final and Delayed does Not mean denied” by pastor Jesse Giddens 3. “There is no telling how many miles, you will have to run while chasing your dream career” by Carlos Quiñones
Nay will always and forever be grateful to God, Jesus Christ Yeshua for the day; he met the Army recruiter who changed his life from being homeless to a proud Army veteran with a total of 23 years of active and reserve service.
Nay still continues to serve with the Army working with active duty soldiers (aka green suiters) as he fondly calls soldiers as government DOA civilian admin human resource assistant at the Fort Irwin Army base.
- Active Duty
- Post 9/11 (01-Present)