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The Crushers Are Back in Town

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

The best melee of all was in lovely Kingsport, jewel of northeast Tennessee. I was in the heel's dressing room (heels always seem the funniest storytellers) when someone stuck his head in the door and said, "Riot!" . . . when we ran to the curtains we saw Pop fighting his way to the far doors with the aid of a couple of cops. The crowd was in a nasty mood - which was typical. By the time we got there Pop had realized he was going in the wrong direction and had started back through the howling mob to the stage.

Brother Frank was lying face down on the floor of the stage, not moving a muscle, as what seemed to be the entire population of northeast Tennessee tried to reach him for one last swing or kick. Finally the cops quieted the crowd, which must have thought the old man was dead or dying. The curtains were drawn, and I waited for the wail of an ambulance, for surely Pop was in need of medical aid. But the sly possum suddenly jumped to his feet, not a mark on him, and strode into the dressing room with a sinister grin on his face, basking in the hatred of the fans and confident that next week would be a packed house. -"My Father the Thing," by Joe Jares   Sports Illustrated (March 21, 1966)

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