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Funking Conservatory Wrestling School - 352-895-4658

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Funk's Corner - Dory Funk Sr.                      Dory Sr. Dives from the Conning Tower of LSM 182

Dory Funk Sr. began his wrestling career as a high school wrestler in Hammond Indiana where he was a state champion amateur wrestler. His style was leg wrestling, different than virtually all his competition who were freestyle wrestlers. His thoughts were that the legs were stronger than the arms so it made sense to him to wrestle with his legs. Dory Funk Sr.'s favorite hold was the top body scissors, a hold that was painful and would truly stretch someone's body. With this devastating hold he also used a vicious cross face maneuver along with a half nelson and the painful sugar hold. Even though it wasn't common to submit in amateur wrestling, many of Dory Funk Sr.'s opponents would be in so much pain, they would pin themselves to escape the torture.

Dory Funk's amateur wrestling earned him a scholarship to Indiana University where he was coached by a very famous amateur wrestling coach, Billy Thom. 

After two years in college the Dory Funk Sr. married his high school sweetheart, Dorothy Matlock. With World War II heating up, he first took a job with Inland Steel then Pullman Standard a company that had converted to making tanks for the military. Funk Sr. was with Pullman Standard only a short time before enlisting in the United States Navy where he served in the South Pacific as a Bosun's Mate aboard  LSM 182.

Dory Funk Sr.'s days in the U. S. Navy were an exciting time. I used to listen to stories of Dad's days in the South Pacific aboard LSM 182. He would tell of the Kamikaze Pilots coming in. On LSM 182, it looked like they were coming directly at them but in truth, LSM 182 was too small a target for the Kamikaze's as they were targeting the Destroyers and Fuel Tankers.

Dad told of the beach landings under fire from the Japanese on Iwo Jima. LSM 182 was built to run up on the beach and let off troops in shallow water. The big door would open on the front of the ship and they had only minutes to get all Marine personnel off of LSM 182 and onto the beach. Time was crucial because behind the first ridge on the sand beach were Japanese Mortars. They would fire a mortar when the ship landed on the beach. A spotter on the ridge with binoculars would advise the mortar operators where the shell landed relative to the ship. Next,tThey would adjust the range and direction and fire a second. It was always closer. Dad said if they had time to fire of a third mortar, the probability was strong it would be a direct hit. They had to have all marine personnel off the ship and on the beach and pull out before a third mortar could be fired.

During peaceful times at sea, Dad said they would find things to do for recreation. Sometimes there would be a challenge from another ship as to who was the best wrestler on the ship. They would tie two ships together and have a wrestling tournament between ships. According to Dad, He never lost an intra-ship match and was "Champion of the Fleet."

Dory Funk Sr. was an excellent diver and could do some difficult dives that I have never seen performed before or since. His specialty was diving from the Conning Tower of LSM 182. It was about a hundred feet high. Dad said you could not dive when the ship was level or you would just land onto the deck. He had to wait until the proper wave came to make the ship list to the Starboard, then when the time was right he could dive and miss landing on the deck.

After the war, LSM 182 was scheduled to leave the South Pacific and Sail first to the West Coast of the United States, then sail through the Panama Canal up the East Coast to Norfolk, Virginia. All ranked personnel would have to make the trip through the canal. Seamen would be let off in San Francisco. Dad wanted to get home as quickly as possible so he punched an officer and got busted from Bosun's Mate to Seaman. He then was released in San Francisco and jumped a train to travel to his home in Hammond, Indiana.

LSM 182 was a Landing Craft that could run right up on the beach with huge doors on the front for unloading troops, tanks and other equipment directly on the beach.

When I was only 6 years old and Terry was 3, we traveled on the wrestling circuit to Florida. Our family lived in a cottage on Lake Panasofke just South of Ocala, Florida. Dad wrestled the Territory, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, Jacksonville and Tallahassee. As a family we fished on Lake Panasofke and visited Ross Allen's Silver Springs on many occassions. Little did I realize that I would return to Ocala, Florida.


Funking Conservatory Wrestling School - 352-895-4658

The Funking Conservatory is a professional wrestling school owned and operated by Dory and Marti Funk. The Funking Conservatory is located in Ocala, Florida and produces it's own Wrestling TV show called !BANG! TV online 24/7.

At the Funking Conservatory our priority is: (1) Safety (2) In-ring performance and (3) Television training.

The Funking Conservatory runs many different types of programs from 3 month programs to 6 month programs and even two year programs that will get you ready for the big leagues.

We have programs for professional Wrestlers, Referees, Promoters, Commentators, Announcers and Managers. We are coed and have teenage programs.

You will have a wrestling match your first day of training. Three weeks of training and you will qualify to appear on our !BANG! TV show.


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