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 - Lloyd Maxwell

Some of my earliest memories of the wrestling here in Amarillo are being over at Steve Stack's service station, each week.  I probably got to see most of the wrestlers that I saw on Thursday night's card.  I remember a van load of guys pulling up at Steve's, and out came Mr. Pogo, Karl Kox, and two other guys who I did not know.  They all came inside and sat  down in the small office area at Steve's.  I would be sitting down eating my bag of peanuts and drinking my bottled coke.  I would listen to all these bigger than life guys talking about the matches they either had, or were going to have in the next few days!

I remember one Thursday night, Dory Funk Jr. wrestled someone, I have forgotten his name, but Dory had a BIG cut on his knee, and I heard my dad say that that was probably not supposed to happen.  Well, when we waited after the matches Dory came out, and told us he was all right… it was just part of the game.

They used to sell programs each week to tell everyone about the matches and the stars coming in.  Well this week they were selling a picture/autograph book, and you could get each wrestler to sign his picture.  I asked Steve if he would take it into the dressing room and pass it around, but he told me he did not have enough time to do so.  He would though, after the second or third match, try to get me into the dressing room!!  Boy was I thrilled!  I got ALL the good guys autographs!  When I wanted to go to the (other) side, where the bad guys were, I was denied getting to go in there.  I was not a happy camper… but I figured I could just wait until the matches were over, and do it then.

Back then the guys were so much into their characters that they would not (give) autographs!! So I thought to myself I could probably get some at Steve's in the next few weeks.  That turned out to be a real conversation piece.  I took my book to Steve's and left it there, and (every) wrestler that came by signed it, even some that were not pictured in there.  I sure wish I had that book today… many of those guys have either passed away or faded into wrestling history.

Most of the first few years of attending the matches I used to buy general admission tickets, and I would stand by either the good guys dressing room, or the bad guys room. Karl Kox would run in a lot of the time and interfere in the matches.  One night I was standing there, and he came out and tripped over me, think he missed his timing on when he was supposed to get to the ring.  I remember laughing sooooo hard.  The next week I saw him at Steve's and he just sat there and did not say anything.  I was going to say something but I thought, “why rub it in!”

In latter years, Dennis Stamp came into the territory.  He and Dory Funk Jr. used to have long, long matches.  I always cheered for Dennis, but most of the time Dory won the match. I had everyone sitting around me giving me bad looks.  Dory was kind of like god around there in that territory.  After Dennis quit wrestling he opened his own business called Caverly's Pest Control.  Mom had passed away and I was living at a local motel.  One day I saw this guy spraying for bugs and I thought, “Man, he sure looks like someone i know.”  Well about a month latter he was back spraying again, and I watched him (real) close.  He probably thought “Why is this guy watching me.”  Well I asked the manager of the motel, and he said his name was Dennis!  About two years later,  I had moved into my own house, and I had a problem with roaches, and I remembered Dennis.  I called him and he came out and sprayed my house.  We got to talking about wrestling, and that started a friendship that has lasted to this day!

I remember when "Lord” Alfred Hayes came into the territory.  It was November 7th, 1971 .  He seemed, at least to me, to be such a gentleman.  The fans did not know whether to boo him or not.  I really don't remember him being in the area long, but he did come and go a lot. One Saturday at Steve's, he came in and sat down right beside me.  I asked him how he was doing.  He just sat there ignoring me like I did not say anything.  I went over to Steve and asked him what Hayes’ problem was and he said he was just being kayfabe... I asked what that was and Steve just laughed.  It was many, many years before I ever did figure that out.  LOL!

Another funny story was when Dick Murdock had a flat tire. Let me describe the area around Steve's place.  It was kind of like on the side of interstate 40, the exit was right at Steve's place. Well Dick came running, and when I say running he was really just trotting… LOL.  He had a tire he was rolling down the street, and it got away from him.  We were watching this from Steve's small office.   Everyone was laughing soooo hard. Dick finally got it back, and said that next time Steve could go and get it!



More stories from Steve's and the old man who sat next to me for many years 

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