Updated: Aug 26, 2019
I just watched part of a story on Tom Landry on the NFL TV Channel – one of the greatest coaches ever in the NFL. I reflected back to that special evening in Charlotte when I met Tom, got my photo with him and he signed an autograph for me.
I remember him coming up an escalator – perhaps at the convention center – there he was – bigger than life – the man that was THE COACH of the DALLAS COWBOYS!
Well, he had recently been dismissed as the coach after 29 years.
“There are two kinds of coaches, them that have been fired and them that will be fired” were his first words to start his talk – I believe it was Fellowship of Christian Athletes event.
I think back to all those years when our family would plan our Sunday dinners around the TV and sometimes staying up late for Monday night football.
I was about 7 or 8 when Jerry was at Mamaw’s house, the Cleveland Browns and Dallas Cowboys were playing on TV. Jerry said he knew Pat Howley, who’s brother Chuck Howley was #54 of the Dallas Cowboys. From that day – The Dallas Cowboys became our team. We cheered for them, I cried when they lost Super Bowl V to the Colts. However, my hero Chuck Howley was MVP of the game – first time a defensive player and player on the losing team was awarded the MVP trophy.
I got a Chuck Howley autograph for Christmas when I was in the 6th grade as Speedy Durrett had it framed and waiting for me at his house that holiday! The way Chuck signed my name, is the way I still sign my name!
Pat Howley ended up laying the stone on our fireplace and I spent a couple memorable days helping him and he let me lay the final stone at the top left of the fireplace. Pat always brought those Brixment pencils to Jerry that we used for years!
Our family all agreed on our team and through the years we have memories of watching those Super Bowls, the preseason games, the heroics of our heroes – the Drew Pearson catch against the Vikings to win the game, beating the Dolphins and the Broncos for the Super Bowls, losing to the Steelers.
One of the first Monday night football games, we were living in Ordnance Park and the Cowboys lost 35-0 to the Cardinals. Speedy was there with us, I had the red beanbag chair as we all suffered together, as we had more wins than losses!
I have written about the 1994 Super Bowl memory that I relive every Super Bowl Sunday. That was a Big Dream Come True for sure to be there when they won the big game!
Yea I still want them to win, but do not know the players names or really care. No team mattered more over my lifetime and the family memories will always be special!
Just a couple weeks ago, aunt Penny brought me her dad’s Troy Aikmen replica jersey that will mean a lot to me from now on – the last great and winning QB for The Cowboys.
Thanks to Tom Landry, the architect for America’s Team for bringing our family together and to share so many memories in our lives!