Dandy Don and Grassburrs

In 1948 I had tried my hand at sports but decided to focus on playing my horn.  Mount Vernon and Mount Pleasant were separated by only 14 miles. We were visiting them that year and they were beating up on everyone.  Our band was seated behind our team and I saw this kid about 10 years-old, crawling around under our grandstand trying to look up dresses.  He then eased out to our team benches and began to attach grassburrs to our players’ socks. Needless to say those boys were much more interested in stopping the pain of stickers than playing a game. John Pat Temple and I put our horns down and proceeded to close in on the culprit. We chased him all the way to the other end of the field.  When we caught him he started cursing us out, yelling that he was Don Meredith and his big brother was Billy Jack Meredith( great punter who went on to play for TCU) and he would come and beat our b—s.  One of the teachers from Mount Vernon saw the whole thing and came to escort Master Meredith back to the home side. That same fiery spirit carried Dandy Don all the way to stardom as both a member of the Dallas Cowboy Ring of Honor and the Hall of Fame.  That was the last year our teams met, so I have no idea as to how he behaved from then on, but it was no surprise as to how tough Don Meredith was and how far he would go as an athlete and later as a personality in sports and film. I always admired him and will never forget just how hard it was to hold on to him, even as a youngster.  We lost him at the age of 72, but we still have our memories, burrs and all. He could have been a victim of  ‘too-much-too-soon’, but  somehow overcame and became a strong Christian man who, with his wife, spent the last years of his life counseling couples with marriage problems.

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