Thursday, December 3, 2009

Carlyle Towery - Walking Legend

A familiar sight around Marion is Mr. Carlyle Towery. Although pushing 90 years old, he takes his exercise walk everyday. This morning he was walking around one of our local grocery store parking lots.

Carlyle Towery is one of our local sport heroes from yesteryear. In 1936 he was co-captain of the Shady Grove Bear Cats. He was the high point star for the team and measured 6ft 5 in tall. He received much praise from spectators for his good basketball style.

After graduating from Shady Grove High School Mr. Towery went to school at Western Ketncuky University. At 6'5" Towery played center for the Hilltoppers, leading them to the NCAA tournament in 1940 in Indianapolis where they lost to Duquesne 30-29.

Towery made the All-American team in 1940, just the second Hilltopper to earn the honor. He is listed as the 21st all-time scorer for the school although, judging from the words of praise of some of his peers, it is clear he is much more well thought of than that.

Following his collegiate career, Towery went to the old Nation Basketball League, forerunner of the National Basketball Association, with the Fort Wayne Zollner Pistons. The club won the league title in 1944. Towery's pro career was delayed by military service and then was ended by a near-fatal automobile accident in 1950.

Our hats off to you Mr. Towery.

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