Remembering UT icon Dummy Forgey who gave his all for Tennessee

Remembering UT icon Dummy Forgey who gave his all for Tennessee

Football

Remembering UT icon Dummy Forgey who gave his all for Tennessee

General Robert Neyland had a historic and memorable career at Tennessee that spanned 21 seasons over three separate head coaching stints.

As World War II was going on, then retired Major Neyland went through the offseason following the 1940 campaign with an impression that he would not go back into service unless he felt that the country needed him. That is what happened as he was ordered to duty April 28, 1941, and would report May 26 to Norfolk, Va. He was given a farewell and Neyland envisioned coming back the following May, but that did not happen as he returned for the 1946 season.

Shortly after Neyland departed for his second military duty, the UT football program lost another important person.

Dummy Death
Knoxville News-Sentinel – August 1, 1941

 

Dummy Truck
Knoxville News-Sentinel – July 26, 1941

On August 1, 1941, J.M. “Dummy” Forgey died following being struck by a truck while crossing Vine Avenue and Central Street in Knoxville and was thrown 40-feet.

Forgey spent over three decades at UT, serving as a trainer attendant. Forgey also scouted players, was in charge of the team’s equipment and was close with players and even had players help pay his way in busing or taking the train to road games.

Going to road games was a challenge at times for Forgey being African-American. Neyland would hide him in his car until the conductor was done checking tickets and all was clear.

Forgey also made it a point to go out at night and kill graveyard rabbits and cut off their hind legs and keep them in his pocket for good luck, 11 total, on game day for the 11 players on the field.

Forgey gave his all for Tennessee.

Dummy Picture
Knoxville News-Sentinel – November 13, 1938

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