Dory Funk Sr. (He Knew Terry Best)
Terry Funk's blue "65 Ford Mustang Hatch-back was flying down Fourth Avenue in Canyon, Texas when a car pulled out on his left side. There was the squealing of tires, a crash, and the sound of crunching steel. Terry's new Ford Hatch-back Mustang was destroyed.
Fortunately even though he was shaken up, he felt no broken bones, cuts, or injuries. He looked over to the right seat where his passenger, Dandy Jack Donovan was sitting Donovan seemed to be okay too. Thirty seconds passed as Terry contemplated how close they had come to serious injury. His next thoughts concerned the wrestling business. Even though he wasn't wrestling aganst Donovan that night, territory rules were that Jack Donovan and Terry were not supposed to be seen together. Terry said to Donovan, "Quick Jack, "You have got to get out of here before someone sees us. Jack get out of here. You have got to disappear." Now at least a minute had passed with Donovan showing no signs of injury. Terry said, "Go, Go, You are a heel in the territory. Get out of here before someone sees you." Jack Donovan looked at Terry then reached up, grabbed his shoulder and said, "Oh, I have injured my shoulder. Get me a doctor." Donovan wasn't going anywhere but to the hospital in Canyon, and the whole town would know the two were riding together.
1965 was Terry's firs year in the business and he wasn't going to miss a shot for any reason, not even an accident that destroyed his car. Terry called his mother in law, Annie Weaver and told her of the problem. Terry asked if he could borrow her blue '65 Ford victoria so he could make the town. A police report was completed, Donovan was taken to the hospital, and before the wrecker could load up Terry's new 65 Ford Mustang and haul it off to the junk-yard, Terry was on the way to Cisco, Texas in his mother in law's new '65 Ford Victoria by himself.
"Terry, there is something wrong with you. You have been hurt in that car wreck and even though you were able to go into the ring and have a great match tonight there is still something not right about you. I want you to go straight from the arena home. I do not want you taking the long way through Brekenridge and buying beer. I want you to go direct to your house and get some rest. I don't want you drinking beer on the way home." Terry said, "Yes Dad, I will do just as you say."
Dory Funk Sr. asked Jack Brisco to ride back that night with Terry to help him drive and keep him company on the long trip after the matches. As they left the arena, Dory Funk Sr. was following them to make sure that they didn't take the long way through Brekenridge to buy beer for the trip home. Terry floorboarded the accelerator and pulled away, then he made a quick turn to the left, circled the block and shut off his lights. They watched as Dory Funk Sr. drove by looking for their car. After Dory Sr's car had passed, Terry and Jack pulled out and headed in the opposite direction on the way to Brekenridge to buy beer for the trip home.
Once in Brekenridge they went to the liquor store and bought a case of Coors and ten bags of fried pig skins. Now they were ready for the 300 mile trip back home. At 4:00am they were lost between Matador and Quitaque on a dirt road traveling 80 miles an hour. Terry hit the breaks and yelled, "Watch ouuuuttttttttt!!!!." Traveling at least 60 miles an hour, his mother-in-law's blue '65 Ford Victoria ran through a "T" intersection, into the bar-ditch on the other side and went airborne through the barbed wire fence and landed in a wheat field on the other side, destroying the second car in one day.
Miraculously Terry and Jack were not seriously hurt. The first words out of Terry's mouth came with tears, "I have wrecked two cars in one day and My father is going to kill me."
Terry and Jack walked to a farm house where Terry called his father to let him know what had happened. All Jack could hear was loud cursing on the receiver and Terry answering, "Yes dad. I'm sorry dad. You are right dad. It won't happen again dad. I'm sorry dad, I should have listened to you dad, I'm sorry."
When Terry arrived home the next day, He received news that he was being sued by Jack Donovan for injuries received in the first accident in Canyon, Texas. 1965 was Terry's first year in professional wrestling. He spent that year paying for two cars.
Last year at a Cauliflower Alley convention in Tampa, Florida, I saw Dandy Jack Donovan. His first words when we met again after some 30 years were, "Dory, do you remember the day in the old Amarillo territory that Terry wrecked two cars in one day?"
On September 11, 1997 as a part of "WrestleFest, 50 Years of Funk," Terry and I will be appearing together on the same card. I will be wrestling Rob Van Dam and Terry will wrestle his last match in Amarillo, Texas. He will be facing the WWF World Champion, Bret Hart. "Terry, thanks for all the memories. I love you and congratulations, You have come a long way and done a hell of a job."
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