Grand Champion Banjo
By THE TEXAS IRONMAN
Well the first time I seen Banjo I was picking up his big half-brother, Coy’s Slap Jack. I didn’t pay him much attention outside of the fact that he was a pretty little son-of-a-bitch. I don’t think Joe Hoskins offered me a chance at him then. That was before Sack had quit in the match against Bo Wells and Bobby Hall. Well after I had looked at Slap Jack, and a couple of weeks after Sack had quit on A. W. McCool. Me and a friend of mine named Timothy Hanna had returned to Joe Hoskins house to buy a littermate to Slap Jack. That was Betty Jo’s first litter bred to McCool’s Bully. Well Timmy had never even been to a match. He was at my house when I was looking at Slap Jack and wanted to get in the dogs. I was pretty broke at the time. So I invited him to go in as a silent partner on the other brother to Slap Jack. He agreed so I called Joe and made the deal for Choppa for $400 dollars. He was a cold dog. I told Timmy that was cheap for a nearly three year old dog. But it was also a gamble that I could get him started. So the next weekend we went up to Paris, Texas to Joe Hoskins house to pick up Choppa. While we were there Joe showed some interest in matching Betty Jo again. Joe had cancer and knew he was going to die. He was very sick and did not travel very far from home at that time. So I offered to rent Betty Jo for a Match. He liked the idea. So we agreed that I would give him $500 dollars for the use of Betty Jo in a match of my choosing. Joe needed money and could not get involved with the crazy stuff I was likely to pull. He had a family to feed and that is why he had started to sell off his dogs. I asked what her weight was. He said it was 38lbs. We shook hands and I paid him. Well while we had been talking and making our deals, my buddy Timmy had seen Banjo and had been playing with him. At some point he had asked Joe if Banjo was for sell. Joe told him he could have Banjo for $100 dollars because he was only 9 months old. So Timmy hit me up that we should buy Banjo. I told him I was not interested in that dog because his daddy’s mama was a man biter, which I can’t stand, and his daddy was a cur that had quit on all fours and was in no danger of dying, just two weeks or so earlier. I saw the video, and Sack was a cur. Well Timmy didn’t really understand what a gamble buying a dog right off a cur was. Or how low the odds were that such a dog could turn out. I did not know how exceptional a dog that Betty Jo was. I wouldn’t have been as worried about a dog off her and a son of McCool’s Bully and her sister if I had. Well we had a bit of a discussion about the wisdom of this purchase. But he was real hard headed about it, and brought up the fact that he had put in $200 dollars on a grown dog that wouldn’t fight. I had to give in. So I offered Joe $50 for the pup and he said yes. So we shook hands and paid up and loaded up. Timmy was living with me and Terri. So I told him Banjo would be his responsibility. I didn’t have time to fool with that dog and would be busy with the keep and schooling these other dogs. He said no problem. And he did his part. Banjo and Timmy got to be good friends. Timmy would go out every day and take care of Banjo, and play with him and take him for long walks. And I didn’t give them much thought. I wasn’t having much luck getting Choppa started, but I liked Slap Jack so much I wasn’t about to give up on Choppa very easy. I got Betty Jo hooked into a 2xw out of Louisiana. And we settled in for the long hall. I matched her at 38lbs like Joe said for $1000 dollars on the front money with a $500 dollar forfeit. Well when I picked up Betty Joe a week before the match. She looked real good, Joe had done a fine job on the keep. Joe Hoskins was a solid dog man, he had been around for years. He was not known around very well, but he was known very well by those that had been around. I was a little concerned about her weight. And as the week went on that concern was well founded. It was obvious that she was a 37lb dog by Thursday. It was already getting hot and I am not bringing in a dog heavy on a warm humid night in Louisiana. So Timmy and I hit the road and we met A. W. McCool in Minden La. Of course Joe couldn’t make it. Let me make something very clear here. McCool and Hoskins were good friends, and just as any good friends do in the dog game, they were involved in each other’s breeding and matches. I bought dogs from McCool and I bought dogs from Joe Hoskins. But I am not never bought a dog from Joe and Tony. Joe never had to call Tony when I was making a deal with him. Neither did Tony have to call Joe when I was making a deal with him. Tony never owned Banjo or BB Red one day of their life. He owned their daddy and that was it, period. I give credit where credit is due. Joe was the seasoned veteran and was Tony’s mentor as far as the dogs go. Tony was a young man just as I was, and he has done a lot since then, but he was a minor player in the deals I made with Joe. So anyway, Betty Jo hit the scales at just under 37lbs and then we got a break. The other bitch came in way heavy at 41 1/2lbs. Well I collected the $500 dollars. And was firmly in control. A position I always wanted to be in. They was going for their Championship and it was a big show with a lot of people. So they was wanting that certificate real bad. I guess she had been shown at that same spot in front of the same people before that in her other matches. She had finished them quickly. So I told them I would be willing to look at it for 4 to 1 odds. I would only bet back their $500 to $2000. As Betty Jo was not my dog and the owner was not there to talk to about it. And I wouldn’t kill his dog just for money. But I was willing to gamble the forfeit for a chance. So the match went on. By the time we got them washed and in the pit the side bets was 2 to 1 against us. That big Chocolate Bitch ran over Betty like a freight train, berried up in her stifle and stayed there. And the side bet promptly went to 4 to 1. I was a little concerned and waited for 15 min or so to decide what I was seeing. If that bitch would have let go of that stifle and switched to the other one at any time in the first 40 min. she would have killed us. Because Betty Jo could not have defended herself crippled in both stifles. BUT SHE DIDN’T! She just stayed there rooting in deeper and deeper on that same leg, up high in the meat. And though she had crippled that leg, she had not opened of any arteries and we had lost very little blood. And Betty Jo was fighting her ass off from the bottom and about the 20 min mark I decided we would stay for the long hall. And I started putting my money where my heart was. At 4 to 1 I would make plenty of money to compensate old Joe if I had to kill his bitch to win. And I could already see that she was going to win, but I thought it would probably kill her to do it. So I got about another $3000 bet at 4 to 1 over the next 25 min. Then when all my money was bet something amazing happened. That neither I nor anyone else that had been watching that match ever dreamed could happen that far into a hard match on a hot night. Betty Jo quit trying to get a leg or shoulder, and reached around and bit that monster on the top of the snout and BROKE IT from the middle of the front teeth to the back ok the jaw. The whole side of that snout was broke off and just swinging, And that bitch came out of that stifle unable to defend herself. I had called a turn on Betty Jo a long time ago when she was on her back and the refs back was turned. LMAO which he promptly gave me. There is a lot to winning a match besides having a good dog. And I know it all. So anyway, they are as ready to handle as I am. We get a handle and I see that bitch is finished. When I scratch Betty Jo she goes over on 3 legs and snaps that Chocolate bitches front leg and compound fractures it (that’s when the bone is sticking out of the meat). Whooooo! Hooooo! That bitch cured to the bone. Headed for the wall, but Betty Jo wouldn’t let her out. She exited stage left on the next scratch, over the wall. LMAO
THE PIG PICKEN
Back in the late 80’s and early 90’s if you matched dogs at any level especially in the south, you ended up at Barry Walston’s place in Minden, La. Well every year during those days, Barry would through a barbecue and beer bust. No matches no gate. Just a lot of good food and good times. Everybody and anybody could come. Well that year my new partner and I decided to go. I had a 1980 model four door Chevrolet Impala. A real boat, land cruiser deluxe. Well we took out the back seat put in a new 50 gal trash can with a full keg of Bud Wiser and ice with the spout hanging over the back of the front seat. And off we went to Barry’s place. We went early and stayed late. On the way home we went by Jimmy Mayfield’s house and partied another day. So on July the 6th about noon we headed back to Texas on the end of a two day drunk with no sleep. Of course I had to do all the driving. And when we left Shreveport Timothy promptly went to sleep. Well it’s about 100 miles from Jimmy’s house to the place I had at that time. And Timothy slept the whole way. Almost. Then about 15 miles from the house he set straight up in the seat and informed me that Banjo would kill that Choppa dog. I told him to go back to sleep you drunk son-of-a-bitch. Then he said it again. And then we started arguing about it. Then I got mad. It never fails. You take a guy in and start to try to teach him something. The first thing he wants to do is prove he is smarter than you. Well finally I told him when we get to the house, I’m going to show you how to ruin a young dog. And when he is ruined, you are going to shoot him. Because I am not cleaning up your mess and doing all the dirty work every time you get a dumbass idea in your head. And if your mission is to beat me, you got to get your own dogs and your own yard and $1000 dollars, and get busy. Not only was this dog two years older almost. He was also ten pounds or better heavier. And a 7lb bigger match dog I think. Both dogs belonged to us and this was self-destructive way of thinking. I saw many of men be the source of their own demise in the game. Because of flawed thinking like this. So anyway by the time we got to the house I was in a drunken rage. We went straight from the car to the chains to the roll pit. My wife Terry came out the back door, seen what was going on, and started batting down the hatches. She knew me very well. And had saved more than a couple of dumbasses lives in similar situations before. Well we had some trouble even getting them started. And when we did old Banjo was handling big brother pretty good. And we continued to argue heatedly. Well Timmy didn’t know a thing about handling and when we set up Choppa to scratch he didn’t immediately go over, Timmy didn’t know nothing about a count or anything else. And promptly declared Banjo the winner and himself right. LOL. I LOST MY MIND. And old Timmy had seen that before. I started kicking down the pit walls. Telling Timmy to get that dog and all his shit off my property. He put Banjo on a chain and disappeared. I mean he pulled a vanishing act. Then I really got mad. Terry was standing out of the way talking real calmly to me. Like she always did. She could usually talk me back to earth. But not today. I headed to the house. She took off ahead of me and got in the back door before I was able to navigate the stairs. We lived in a trailer house. The back door had one of those tall and narrow colored windows. THE ONES MADE OUT OF FIBER GLASS. So Terry locked the door and I ran my fist through the window all the way to my elbow and stuck there. So naturally I ran my left arm in the same. Well I could reach the lock. But when I pulled my arms out it shredded me to the tips of my fingers. Since beer makes your blood extra thick, LMAO, I bled like a stuck hog. Any way I finally got my hands on my semi-auto 22 cal. riffle. I don’t know what happened, but I missed the first shot. Anybody that ever saw me do any shooting back in those days will tell you. Drunk or sober I didn’t miss much. I was shooting at the first dog I saw. That was my intentions, I would shoot every dog we owned. I mean if that is all we are going to do is ruin them over stupid pride. I’d just as soon get it over quick. Well that dam gun jammed and I couldn’t get it unjammed. So I broke it in a million pieces. I went and found a .22 cal. revolver after that, it was a nine shot with a screw in shaft holding the revolver. And was empty. When I took out the shaft, the pistol and my hands were covered in fresh blood and that little shaft slipped through my fingers. That is why I carried two guns all my life. Cause in the heat of a bloody battle, you are likely to lose one. I learned that from an old knife fighter. I am not no knife fighter. So after that I told Terry I was going to go to Timmy’s dad’s house. He had some great concrete floored kennels, with these big whelping rooms. I had a bitch that belonged to my good friend Jimmy Mayfield over there. She was getting ready to drop a litter. I told her to tell Timmy to get his shit, that mutt and anything else he wanted and get the hell out before I got back. I got in the Impala and headed up the road. We lived at the end of a dirt lane that came off the end of a blacktop road that turned off a Farm to market road. We was in the country. Well when I got to the end of the blacktop there was old Timmy turning in his Chevrolet pickup. I guess he thought it was safe to come back. WRONG! I rammed his ass with that Impala. LMAO. I drove the driver’s side front tire up under the engine. My shit was still running. So I backed up and pulled alongside of him and rolled my window down and said, “Let me see you scratch now.” And drove off. Went and got Jimmy’s bitch. When I came back his truck was still sitting there but he was gone. I got back to the house and my old lady got me in a hot shower, and I was out of juice. I thought. I came out in nothing but a pair of jeans. Was laying on the couch about to pass out. Here come a knock on the door. Some dam constable from down the road, who should have known better, was out there asking Terry questions about who had been driving that Impala. Nobody, she said. LOL. I train my girls well. He had some Idiot on a ride along. About that time I snatched Terry out of the door. Stepped down from the top step to the ground barefooted. Headed for that constable. I told him you better get your ass in that car. Pointed at the other one and told him you better get there first. And then started telling them their future if they didn’t get off my property. They skedaddled. LOL. I talking about booked. Well they took off in a cloud of dust. But they didn’t get very far. Two car loads of Van Zandt County Sherriff cars passed them headed my way. They come pouring out of them cars kind of surrounded me in a half moon. Six of them just standing there. I told my old lady. Look at this shit baby. I must be one dangerous man. I told her go get the boys. They are going to want to see this. Ain’t no way I was ever going to get in a Van Zandt County Car with hand cuffs on. I’d have never made it to the jail alive. I’d had several of these little stand offs and they always ended the same. I’ll turn myself in or we can all get bloody. I had a lot of personal problems with that particular police force. About that time here come a DPS officer. He got out of his car went over to that Impala with a clip board. Was walking around it writing things down. Never said a word. I was watching him out the corner of my eye. He stopped in front of that car and was looking at something. Then he laid down his clip board, reached in and pulled out a piece of Timmy’s grill about a foot long and ten inches high. I knew I was hit. He laid it down and walked straight over to me and said, you are under arrest. I said, whose custody am I in? He said, Texas Department of Public Safety. I said, who is going to take me in? He said, I am. I said, let’s go. And I put my hands behind my back. Those guys were always pretty straight shooters. I never had no problems doing what they told me. Or felt like my life was in danger just because of who I was. Never had one of them mistreat me in any way. I never had no problem with law enforcement doing their job. I knew who and what I was. And never took it personal as long as they didn’t make it personal. As long as they was professional, and just stuck to business. I was professional. With Van Zandt County Sherriff’s Department it was a totally different deal. Anyway, when I got out of jail and sobered up a little. I KNEW I HAD SOMETHING SPECIAL! The next day I called Joe Hoskins up and asked if he had or could get his hands on any of Banjo’s littermates. He told me that some girl he was kin to had taken a female. And that there was also a male he could check on. Two weeks later I went to Paris and picked up BB Red and her belly brother Herb for $200 dollars apiece. BB was by no means cold and Herb was somewhere in the middle.
At about 15 months old I matched Banjo into Wilson’s Wolfy. Wilson was a made man in that cartel from Bomonte, TX. Under the tutelage of James Creel and Robert Kirkland. Their number one prodigy. And Wolfy was from the cream of the crop, top of the line breed Creel Dogs. A littermate to Kirkland’s Susie a good little bitch that feel quickly to BB Red later, when they came for their revenge and pulled out their biggest gun Robert Kirkland. He was also a littermate to the dog that went 3:02 with Duhon’s Champion Moon. I want to say something here before I go on. It is rumored by the misinformed that I picked my shots with Banjo and BB Red. And that is true. I picked the best Dog men and dogs I could find. Wilson and Wolfy was fast lane competition from a Game Dog Dynasty, the Creel Family. A complete suicide mission for the average guy with a 17 month old dog. That hasn’t even started yet. I lined the match up on a night that a big event was taking place in North, Louisiana. One that would draw everybody. Then we went south to Creel’s backyard. Literally. Me, Timothy Hanna, yes we made up before we had to go to court on the ACCIDENTEL wreck we had. LMAO. And another good friend of mine Tim Lackey. Three people from my side. And the Creel Cartel. And everybody else was busy in North Louisiana. If I brought out a monster, I tried to do it quietly. You can’t make no money crowing cock-a-doodledo, and beating your chest. Most men do that because they are trying to scare off everybody. Like a cur dog, barking and bristling up their fur. Because really they don’t want no trouble. But if you ever seen a dog that really wants to get a hold of something, he lays back and gets real quiet, like a lion before he springs out to get your ass. So if I was picking my shots I guess I’m guilty. So any way we went into their back yard. Wolfy had to cross the pit and take hold of Banjo. Banjo was a little slow to get going. And Wolfy got a hold on Banjo’s front right paw and broke his two middle toes. That was the only serious injury Banjo ever sustained in 5 fast lane matches. It was a lesson he never forgot. And the reason you will see him holding up that front right paw in many of his pictures. Now whoever knew, much less told that part of the story? Like I said, I’m the only one who can tell this story. So Wolfy worked that paw pretty good, for a long time. It took that puppy a little while to figure out what to do. But when he got loose, it would be the last time a dog ever got a serious hold on him again until the last fight. But I noticed something I liked after that. It was a trait that he would show every time, in all his matches. He would spin his tail in a clock wise circle. Faster and faster as the fight went on until I would think his ass was going to hover off the ground. And that was about the time he would kill them. He wore Wolfy down on the head. Then when Wolfy stumbled he went to the shoulder and it was over. 45 minutes. It was as long as he would ever go. I took him home. BB Red was matched in her first match. She came in heat a few days later. Two weeks later and two weeks before her match. I bred her to Banjo. She won her match, we got busted. Two weeks later I was taking some money to our lawyer. I didn’t get caught. But I was the one who had hosted the matches. Most of the people who had been busted was from way out of town. So I did all the leg work and managed the case for everyone. They all walked. Nobody has ever done any time behind me. If I got someone into something I got them out. Anyway, my lawyer just brought up the fact that they had three dogs in custody. It was me and Timmy in a pickup that day. When we left, I told Timmy lets go by the dog pound and see if that is where they are holding my dogs, because I want that bitch back. He said, “How are you going to get her back? If she is even there.” I said, “With a shotgun and a ski mask if that’s what it takes.” And I was as serious as hell. We pulled up to the building. And I told Timmy to pull up beside of the building headed toward the street just in case we catch a break. There was a fence around the back, with a gate we parked right beside of. We walked around the front of the building and right in the front door. There was no one at the desk. And all the dogs were raising hell. You couldn’t hear yourself think. We went into the holding area. We never come face to face, or even saw anyone. I came to a door that said no admittance, vicious dogs. I said that is us. We went out that door and turned to the right and was looking at the gate that we were parked by. And between us and that gate was all three dogs, one right after the other one. And BB Red was in the last pin. No locks. I grabbed BB and we were off. Timmy was upside down in the seat of that truck laughing as hard as I ever seen a man laugh in my life. He was saying, “This shit isn’t real. Things don’t happen like this in real life. I can’t believe we just walked in there and took this bitch back. That crazy as hell!” Stuff like that happened to me all the time. Just in case it hasn’t dawned on you yet. It was destiny, my whole life with the dogs was. I’m not trying to take credit for things like this. Shit just happened. It was like a wild roller coaster ride. I just went with it most of the time. Most people were just too scared to get on. She had three puppies. I’ll talk about them later.
The most important thing I found out from Banjo’s first match was that he didn’t travel well. He suffered from severe motion sickness. He would stand in his box and dry heave all the way. He would arrive weak and dehydrated. The rest of his matches I would arrive three days early, all except for one that is. So any way we matched into Anderson’s Slick a Kinard bred dog. It was really a nonevent. It took 29 minutes because Banjo didn’t start for 25 minutes. He never really got excited. Come to find out neither Tony or that Kinard dog had any heart. And he picked him up quick. I was really disappointed. And I was very unimpressed with all them bid time dog men and dogs that was supposed to be the shit from Oklahoma. Gr Ch. Slick head, Count Pierre, and the 7 time winner Heavy Duty. I though the whole lot was a bunch of overblown bullshit. I mean they was all decent dogs. But not nearly worth all the hype. I saw four of the matches between the three dogs I have mentioned. It was the same story every time. Some drunk bum would show up with a Thrifty Nickel Special. For $300 dollars and they would run through him like a dose of salt. SO WHAT! I set my sights on all of them. Harold Parson’s matched into Betty Jo, then Bobby Smith found out what was happening and dropped a dime on me. And they squirreled out of the match halfway in. That is how I ended up matched into Mean Jo Lean, at 41. I had no respect for any dog or dog man from Oklahoma. Except for Steve Standafford. He didn’t run with the regular click and he was honest, and had heart. And that cost him. I eventually got Heavy Duty. But I had to use Big O and his Tank dog to do it. After the show Betty Jo put on. They wouldn’t even answer my phone calls after that. It’s a shame to cur out a bunch of big time dog men with a Bitch that loses.
THEN CAME GRUNT AND FOOLISH PRIDE
Let me say first that Steve was at a big disadvantage from the beginning in this match. He didn’t see either of Banjo’s first two matches. I saw both of Grunts. I thought Grunt was a worthy dog. I was very impressed with his two wins. But I also thought he was a 33 lb. dog. And he was he was too small for Banjo and I knew it. And I told Steve that. I liked Steve, I thought he was a real good guy. I also thought that it was too early in both dogs carrier to run them into each other. There was still plenty of competition out there that hadn’t yet heard about either of these dogs and if we moved quickly we might still get a couple of more matches apiece. Of course Steve totally misread all of this as I was afraid of Grunt. And there was also a little matter of money. I wanted to match for $5000-$10,000. And of course he took that as more evidence that I was scared. Because I knew that was way out of his league. If he would have listened to me and waited he could have been in the match for the Grand Championship for $500 or hell for free. It wasn’t money that I was after. But I got to make money to. Anyway he finally pissed me off one day. And I told him ok. Since you want it so bad, you do what I do when I’m gunning for someone meet all my demands. You come to me. Right to my back yard. Fight for $2000 on the front money because I saw you match a bitch a month ago for $2000. And I want all your side bets. Well to add insult to injury. Steve got thrown into jail the week of the match. I tried to let them out. But he had said too much to too many, and his pride wouldn’t let him do the right thing. So he sent his wife and 16 year old son with the dog and instructions not to pick up under any circumstances. I would have done the same thing. That don’t mean I enjoyed it. It left a bad taste in my mouth. I did everything I could to help them that night. I treated them like they was my wife and son. And obliged them in every way I could. But it didn’t matter. Banjo was starting to get Salty about that time. And a hard charging ball of fire like Grunt who was all business and no foolishness was just what the doctor ordered. And it was a big crowed at home. I swear that dog was as big a showoff as I was. And he rose to the occasion in style. It was a total massacre. Grunt never had a chance, he never made a mistake. So Banjo stayed on that head the whole time. Banjo didn’t fight the ear. Banjo fought the meat that held the ear. He bit Grunt so hard when he got that tail twirling that he busted Grunt’s inner ear. Those of you that seen the video, will notice that Grunt suddenly went loop legged late in the fight. Went to stumbling around like a drunk. I saw it many times when I would punch a man directly in his ear. You bust that inner ear drum they lose balance and get drunk. It causes spaghetti legs. And if you are fighting a man or a dog like Banjo. Spaghetti legs causes death. The next morning Banjo had the second worst injury he would ever sustain in any of his fights. The skin under his neck was hanging lose a couple of inches. Because that was the only thing Grunt ever got his mouth on. I bred Banjo to a female that day just like I did the day after every one of his other matches. I fought BB Red with puppies two weeks in her belly twice. Won the match and delivered the puppies both times. We was moving pretty fast about that time.
FOUR IN A ROW
Banjo’s win over 2xw Grunt was the kickoff event that started one of the greatest, if not the greatest runs in bulldog history. Of course I am bias. But I’ve never heard of any story even close. Two weeks later I took Little Sister Freebee to South Mississippi for her Championship match against Santo’s Ch. Bertha. It was the biggest show I was ever involved with. Over 500 people were at that event. Eight matches in a row. Harvey M. sponsored the event. Danny Burton won the first match with a male. Freebee and Bertha was the second card event. Well everybody but me knew that Bertha had destroyed her first three opponents quickly. And Bertha was a heavy favorite by the time we got in the pit. I found out why quickly. When we pitted them, Bertha came across like a rocket and hit Freebee in the left shoulder and wrecked it. You could hear stuff popping deep inside that shoulder, and Freebee started whining. Now I knew Freebee was a very game dog because I had tested her with BB Red. She is the only dog that ever went more than 40 minutes with BB and lived. And when you are biting hard enough to make a game dog whine. You are doing some serious damage. I knew we were in trouble. Of course the crowd went wild. They had all expected Bertha to win. They had to be a little reserved because it was me. And not to many people that far to the east knew anything about Freebee. But now it appeared I had brought a cur. At least to the untrained ear. When a dog whines there is a certain pitch to it. Different dogs will whine for different reasons. Most people ain’t never been around or paid enough attention to be able to discern which one they are hearing. Those people assume it’s always a sign of a dog that is about to quit. I always make a lot of money when they are wrong. Some dogs will whine out of frustration because they are mad as hell and for whatever reason they can’t get their mouth on the other dog. Ch. Nemo and BB Red would whine if you held them in the corner to long on a scratch. Because they wanted that other dog so bad they couldn’t stand it. Neither of them certainly was not a cur. And even a deep game dog will whine if you are biting them hard enough to break shoulders and legs. So they thought it would soon be over. And for all I knew that bitch was going to open up an artery or switch shoulders, which in either case meant we was through. Well about that time some little jack-off that was sitting right at pit side started hollering, Hey cowboy bet me fifty dollars. Now he ain’t opened his mouth until he herd that shoulder breaking. And I tried to ignore him for a long time. But he wouldn’t shut up. And Freebee needed all my attention. I needed a turn bad. So I keep telling him no thank you I got all my money bet. His mouth got smarter and smarter until I snapped. I said look fella, I got $6800 dollars bet in the middle. And I did my betting before the match started. And now I’m getting killed. Isn’t that good enough for you? He said well hell big money man. Another $50 dollars isn’t shit to a high roller like you. I said, YOUR RIGHT, FIFTY DOLLARS AIN’T SHIT. SO BET $500 OR SHUT THE FUCK UP. So he bet the five hundred. And then he shut the fuck up. Because he knew that if he opened his mouth again I’d make him bet another $500, or make them remove his ass out of my sight. Because I was ready to slap him in his cock sucker the next time he opened it. Well about that time Freebee got loose and Bertha would never get her mouth on Freebee again the rest of the fight. But Bertha was still coming with a vengeance. Hard and fast. Freebee was the second most talented head dog I ever saw behind Banjo. She had one other thing in common with him that the crowd didn’t know about. But about the forty minute mark Bertha made her first and last mistake. Those bitches hadn’t took a deep breath. It had been a total blur up till that mark. Right around the forty minute mark Bertha slipped and went down to the floor. Little Sister let go of that head curled up her back like a Timber Rattler and struck Bertha in the left stifle. Shook her head once and returned to her original hold on the side of Bertha’s head. Lickety-split if you wasn’t looking right at them, you missed it. But not the results. Bertha was leaking on the outside of that leg. Opened up an artery and blood was spraying up in the air about five foot. Opened up an artery inside the leg and a puddle of blood come spreading out under her like a blanket. I thought Santos fat ass was going to kill over with a heart attack. I look over at BIG MOUTH and he was green in the face. LMAO. And the crowd was sitting in stunned silence. I mean you could have heard a pin drop. Just one minute earlier you couldn’t hear yourself think. But all their shit talking had drowned each other out. But not mine. And for the next hour I introduced them folks to some good old East Texas get back. I usually make several mental notes about what all the geniuses thank in the beginning. Hunting ain’t no fun when the rabbit gets the gun! LOL. I punished those people. Oh I was in rare form too. Especially my $50 buddy. That punk had to dig the last $10 of my $500 out from under his seats and ash tray in change. I kept it in a can for years after that. I would laugh my ass off every time I saw it. When it was over me and Howard loaded Little Sister in the van and headed for the motel. She was in bad shape. If I wanted to watch dogs fight, I had one hundred good ones on the chain at the house. Hell me and Howard saw some of the best dog fighting that was to be seen. On a regular basis in my back yard drinking some cold beer, and didn’t have to listen to no geniuses while we was doing it. The next morning H. Miller called me and asked if he could come by before we left. I said sure, I wanted to buy that old Sweet News bitch he had so I wanted to make an offer. Well when he got there, he had his hatin-his-hand, so to speak. I asked him what was wrong. He said, Coy I’m sorry them son-of-a-bitches didn’t give you the best-in-show, or at least gamest-in-show. I picked those three guy’s to be judges cause they was known and supposed to be respectable dog men. And I wanted everything to be above board. The decision they made was crazy. I laughed. He said Coy I’m going down Monday and have you a special plate twice as nice and twice as expensive as that worthless trophy they gave away. I am so embarrassed. Please accept my apology. You see they had given both to Danny Burton. The only other fight I did see. It was a lack-luster fight, and Danny’s dog was some over-priced pile of shit that some rich boy had paid a ton of money for. And they gave the trophies to Danny. Because he was everybody’s hero. I have over 200 professional fights to my record. Have pitted numerous aces and so many dead-game-dogs no one can remember them all. And I never received not one trophy. And I’m glad, because I’m pretty sure that it takes a lot of tooth paste to scrub the taste of dick out of your mouth. So I told Harvey, if that is how you really feel? Then sell me that Sweet News bitch at a fair price. And that will be reward enough for me. I never seen a trophy produce a game dog. So he did. So I went home happy and rich. A bunch of dead presidents make for good trophy material. Two weeks after that we went to South-East Texas. Where BB Red won her championship match against The Bellion’s Club Ch. Gizmo.BB totally destroyed Gizmo, the picture of me and BB and Robert Kirkland was taken right after that match. Two weeks after that we went back to Mississippi. North Mississippi this time to the second biggest event I was ever involved in. That was the night Roadblocks Ch. Joey beat Gr. Champion Texas and Kirkland. We was the second card. It was mine and Mike Lloyd’s Dino going for his championship Against Ch. Smokey. I had bought a half interest in that Dino dog after I matched him for Mike for his second win. Fauls had conditioned and handled for Mike in the first match. And Dino was down off of Ronnie Duhon’s stuff and a son of that Ch. Moon dog. Mike had hurt himself working off shore a few years before that. And had got a little money. He bought some good dogs at that time. But he didn’t know anything about conditioning or handling or feeding. And when his money ran out his old lady left him and took everything except the dogs. And of course all his good bulldog buddies dropped him to. Except when they came by to try and beat him out of some of the dogs he had left. I met mike because he had that Cajun dog, because the crack dealer that bought him from Mike Thibodaux had abandoned him for dead after the 7th off the chain win against Mike Lloyd. Mike was firmly in the Pistol Pete and Boomerang camp. And old Cajun was just out there growing old for nothing going to waist. So when I heard the dog might be there, I called Mike and got the old dog for a pound of Mexican Commercial. Well Mike had hooked up with Tina by that time. And baby girl was my kind of hustler. So they started working for me, and we became friends and I started helping Mike recoup some of his money that he had invested in the dogs. In the dog game some people are your friends because of the money. And some people are your friends and fuck the money. So anyway, me and Mike was partners on Dino by this time. Mike and Robert Kirkland hated each other. I told Mike that Dino could win over Gr. Champion Texas. And that I would buy a CONTROLLING interest in Dino if he wanted to make him famous, take my money, get in the car and ride. Of course that was too simple. I had a good working relationship with Robert based on mutual respect. I had matched several dogs into the Creel Dynasty and had managed to keep our relationship civil. Something that was very rare with that group of individuals. Cause they was a very disrespectful bunch of people. Especially at home. But I liked Robert. He was the finest conditioner and handler I ever faced or saw go. So Mike goes home and calls Robert on the phone. Challenges Texas and does it very rudely. And starts a lot of drama. Not my style at all. It’s hard enough to keep a killing from happening when the drama don’t get started until the night of the fight. But if you start it three months out it’s almost impossible to avoid violence at some point. Especially with my crew and that one. But I was already locked in before I even got the phone call. Mike didn’t have the money to do it himself even if I would have bowed out. I always back a friend’s play. Even if it’s wrong and I’m mad as hell. ALWAYS. So it went the way it went, just like I knew it would. And less than a month in it was already out-of-hand. Then one day I got a call from Robert Kirkland. He said that Roadblock had been talking shit about Texas and accusing him of ducking Ch. Joey etc. etc. And asked if there was any way we could postpone our match. So that he could go after Joey first. He didn’t want to offend me or make me think he was ducking me either for a softer spot. Said he would pay the forfeit and promise us a match for Dino with another Champion if Texas didn’t make it. It was perfect. Know I had control of my match back. And I made it very clear to Mike it better not happen again. You can’t match dogs on foolish pride. So I told Robert, if the dogs in Michigan are that good. Surly they got two Champions. And if they get me a match the same night against a good proven champion. I don’t need a forfeit. I’d rather have the match. And we can postpone our business until a later date. So that is how I ended up in the match with Ch. Dino and Ch. Smokey. And just as I knew it was going to happen. There was a lot of drama during the Texas and Joey match. I mean with the people. I had seen Texas fight twice before. That is how I knew that Dino would whip him. Texas was a typical creel dog. Pit game hang around and if you don’t put some punishment on him. Roberts conditioning and handling is going to beat you down the stretch. Joey was a little better dog than that. But way over rated. I believe that Ch. Smokey would have beat Texas or Joey that same night. Dino and Smokey went 2:48 and was both dead game. Smokey was a very talented head dog that Dino could not catch until 1:45. I mean we never had a bite on him at all. And Dino was not a smart dog at all. He charged straight ahead as hard as he could that whole time desperately trying to get a hold. I thought surly he would run himself into the ground at that pace and old Smokey just ridding him around in circles like a cheap cutting horse. Well it was Smokey that got run into the ground. At 1:45 Dino finally ran him into the corner. Got him in the back stifle high up and crippled him. That was the end of the fancy running. For the next hour and three minutes we got down in the mud and the blood and the beer baby. It was a hell of a fight. Several scratches from both dogs. Smokey was very game and Dino was just in a little better shape. So Dino won and they both gave up the ghost for their effort. Four Championship matches two weeks apart and several thousand miles of traveling. We beat three fast lane Champions and a 2xw that would have been a champion if he would have fought any other dog. All four opponents took their death not one cur in the bunch. And one of mine paid the ultimate price for victory. And we won all four. Now if you know a better story than that one? I’d like to hear it. Bobby Smith put me and Mike and Tina and Banjo, and BB Red, and Little sister Freebee, and Dino on the cover of Face Your Dogs Magazine the next issue.
I don’t remember how the match got started. But I do remember everything else. After I found out about Veto I was very interested in doing the fight. Veto was a 4xw and was the hottest Jeep dog alive at the time. I believe Bobby Smith and Bob Boyd was the main go-betweens. The match was to be at Barry Walston’s place in North Louisiana. The purse was $5,000 with a $2,500 forfeit. On a gentleman’s agreement. That means we trusted each other to do the right thing, and no money was actually put up. I had as many as six dogs match at one time and continuously had three matched at any given time. I could not keep that kind of cash tied up all the time. I had to trust people. I never gave anybody one valid reason not to trust me. So the match was set for 60 days out. Right in the middle of summer. Well right away Willard started calling me every day. I mean every day. Sometimes 2 or 3 times a day if he could catch me. He would tell me how bad old Veto had beat the first four dogs. How he was breeding him to two or three bitches a week so he was losing money doing this match. I would think to myself you are going to lose a lot more. And how typical that program was for a Jeep dog. When you are going to make a Jeep dog a famous stud dog, you need to breed him hundreds of times and produce thousands of puppies. And spend lots of time on the phone doing self-promotion. I would just tell old Willard thank you for giving me a chance at such a good dog. How honored I was to have this opportunity. The more smoke I blew up his ass the bigger his head got. And the more belligerent his arrogance became. I thought, wow, this is it. I’m going to make a lot of money. I’m actually going to be the underdog. Against the best Jeep dog in the country. I would get a woody just thinking about it. Well about two weeks out the phone went dead. I asked my wife Terry, has the guy from Mississippi been calling for me? She said no. He must have died or something. Well the next day Bobby Smith called me telling me how Boyd had been calling everybody telling them that Willard had the FBI and the CIA and the KKK all over his ass. It was quite a story. Murder drugs and all other kinds of stuff was going on and everybody was scared to death. Barry had called off the show. And we would have to make other arrangements. I started laughing. I told him, they heard about Banjo and are running up a smoke screen. He said the police are all over him Coy. I said, they better put up a road block in front of his house if they want to save that red dog. Bobby said, you’re going to Mississippi after hearing all this. I said, I’m going any place I have to. I have endured two month of daily bullshit. And disrespect. And those cur son-of-a-bitches aren’t getting out of this with some boogey man story. He said, what do you want me to tell them? I said, you tell them I will come to Willard’s Daddies house. They can move the couch out of the living room and put up any size pit that will fit. Two men to a dog. And any referee they want. Or any other place or conditions they choose. Or tell them to pay me and admit that they are some cur son-of-a-bitches. Well they knew that Bobby Smith would have printed that word for word in the next issue of FACE YOUR DOGS. That would have been real bad for puppy sells. So when the day came. I headed out to Mississippi. Something had happened and I didn’t get to leave until the day before the match. Which was a Friday. I took my good friend Howard Nip. Him and Mike Lloyd and Tina< Mike’s old lady and John Roach. Where the only ones that had the balls to go by match time. When we got over to Alexandria, La. My alternator went out. It was already late. So I got a room, we was about half way to where they had told us to go. No shops open. So Mike had to get some guy out of bed at a wrecking yard for an alternator. And some spun out dumbass to put it on. It took all night. Early the next morning we took off. Remember what I told you about Banjo’s car sickness. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong. We got to the motel they had told us to go to. I ran a 144 ounces of water and beef broth through Banjo’s stomach from 12 noon to 3 pm. A bad idea any time. But a horror able one in the heat. But going in dehydrated is even worse. Well finally Bob Boyd showed up and took us on a tour of Mississippi. Two and a half hours after we took off we finally met up with Willard and Veto. And off we went again. After about 20 minutes Bob Boyd took a sudden right turn out of the line on a side road. My buddy Howard said, Hey Coy isn’t that the guy we been following all day? Where is he going? I said, I don’t know Howard. But that red dog we come to Mississippi to kill is in that black Suburban in front of us. He laughed. Well another 20 minutes down the road we turned down a country road, and a little further down a dirt path. Then up to a spot where several cars were parked. Willard jumped out of his truck hollering, were is Bob? I said, you seen Bob turn thirty miles back just like I did. Cut the bullshit, and let’s do this. But Bob had half the money. I just shook my head. Remember the forfeit money was $2500 dollars. They thought I would just take the $2500 and go home. And Bob would take one for the team. But puppy prices and stud fees would hold their value and they would be back in business. I said who is the ref? Some guy I didn’t know stepped forward. I said I want to weigh them. Willard got a strange look on his face. The ref ordered him to weigh Veto. He was almost a pound heavy. Banjo was a half of a pound light. Then I turned to the ref and said. They are heavy, they don’t have the money. So this is what we are going to do. You collect all the money Willard has on him. I want the change out of his pockets and his ash tray. Then I want to wash that red dog and put him in the pit. Because I didn’t come to Mississippi to collect a forfeit. I come to kill that red son-of-a-bitch. And if they want to save him they are going to have to cur out in front of GOD and all these good folks. And admit that they are some scarred curs. Then I turned and looked right at old Willard. Puppy sells just went back in the toilet. LMAO. So we got them in the pit. Veto shot over and Banjo caught him coming in. Banjo started fast and was in full control. Veto was charging hard and was taken off his feet real early. Something that hadn’t happened in his first three matches. And just as he always did. Banjo went to the shoulder and made Veto pay dearly for the mistake. When Veto got back on his feet he was crippled in his shoulder and bleeding that dark thick blood. Inside and outside of the shoulder. It wasn’t long before he slipped again and Banjo promptly took out the other shoulder. After that he stayed down more than he stayed up. And they started talking about picking up. A quick pick up, and a courtesy scratch, and puppy sells could be salvaged a little. A live looser will make more money than a dead hero. I think they might have saved him if they would have picked up when they first started talking about it. Then about that time Banjo blew up hot. I mean hot as hell. Looked like he was going to fall out. Well they got all excited, and let me call a funky turn. Let me say this. It was my practice in every match I had to start calling turns as soon as a match got under way. A turn on their dog, a turn on my dog, a turn when the ref was looking the other way talking and couldn’t be sure what had happened. I didn’t care who the turn was on. I just wanted one. And they will usually give you one quick on your own dog. I can’t effect the fight until I can lay my hands on a dog. Then I can take control of the pace. Any way that being said. I never saw Banjo, BB Red, and Slapjack, Betty Jo nor any of her puppies ever made an honest turn. Very few of my dogs that I called and got a turn on ever made a real turn. And this was a good example. If I hadn’t got the handle started. And if they hadn’t been so willing to help me, I might have been in some big trouble. A bad heat spell can disorient a dog so he don’t know what is going on. But we got six quick handles. And they was throwing me big sponges of cool filled water. You can’t have a fast race car without a hot engine. You use water to keep that engine from blowing up. Works like a charm. The last time I handled Banjo’s tongue was in his mouth, the heat spell was over and so was Veto’s life. Banjo went over and was finishing him quick. By the time it dawned on Willard and them it was too late. They picked up Veto and when they faced him for a courtesy scratch blood was running down both front legs like a water fall. You can’t stop that. It’s like someone taking a razor and cutting open their arteries from their arm pits to their elbows. I put a collar on Banjo and he jumped over the wall and drugged me to the car. It was T-bone steak and a girlfriend time and he knew it. Veto died on the way to the truck. A man came up to me and said, Texas Ironman I got something I want you to see. I said OK. He started unbuttoning the front of his shirt. He opened up that shirt and showed me a row of very fresh staples going down the center of his chest. Holding together a cut that was still leaking and oozing. He said, I had a triple by-pass a few days ago. They wouldn’t let me out of the hospital said I could die. But I heard that red dog coming from Texas was the best dog that ever walked on four legs. So I told my wife to get the car running and I snuck out this morning. And I am not disappointed. Everything I heard about that little dog was true. I’d like to shake your hand and pet that dog one time if you don’t mind. And if I die on the way back to the hospital you can know I died happy. Because I got to see the best fighting dog that ever lived go. Every now and then you get to interact with a quality man. It was those times that did it for me. I’d go through a hundred piles like Willard Rivers for one chance to meet a man like that.
Sonny Days in South Texas
We went down to South Texas for the last one. The main reason I took the match is because I couldn’t get another one. He was open to the world. No money was too big. Whatever, whenever, wherever. Not only could I not find a match for Banjo. But he was killing all my action from 34 to 40 pounds. And I was setting on several young up and coming dogs at that time. So finally Mark Davis started telling me that Raul had a two time winner. And wanted a shot. I liked Raul he was a business man and honest and fair minded. I knew there wouldn’t be any drama or bullshit. And the money would be good. So I took the match and agreed to travel to them. I took my old Buddy Jimmy Mayfield. We went down three days early and got in a nice and comfortable motel. Out of the way and a great spot to be with a bulldog. Banjo was the perfect dog to take if you wanted to lay low and not draw any attention to yourself. Cool and laid back as they come. Never got upset. Never got excited about anything but a horse. He hated horses and would lose his mind if he saw one. But outside of that, I never seen him lose his cool about anything. As stable and calm as they come. By Friday afternoon everybody else started coming in. We had that entire motel booked from Friday until Monday morning. And the party was on. Everybody I knew brought a woman for me. It’s good to be King. LOL. By Saturday noon there was chest full of beer stacked in every room, lines of cocaine on every mirror. And half naked girls running everywhere. It was show time. I was on auto pilot. Me and Banjo really put on a spectacle. I wore a pair of $750 dollar ostrich cowboy boots, a $200 cowboy hat, and a $400 black leather jacket to handle in. When the match was over they handed me a collar and a lead rope that I put on Banjo. And he walked himself to the box. I took a wet rag and wiped my hands and was ready to go to the club. Banjo would have been ready also. But he had to wash off Sonny’s blood off first. Oh, I better tell you about the match. Sonny might have been the best dog Banjo ever faced. Bad part for Sonny was that by the time he got to Banjo. Banjo was the best dog that ever lived. Sonny was the only dog that ever had to face a grown and mature Banjo. I don’t know how good Banjo really was. Because he was just starting to come into his own in this match. He wasn’t even three years old yet. But Sonny did something that no other dog ever did. He put Banjo on his back. Not for long. But he did it, and not only that. But he also got into Banjo’s stifle. That got Banjo’s attention and got Sonny killed. Banjo reach around and took old Sonny by the side of the head and pulled him off and stood up with power and force. His tail was spinning like a helicopter blade. I thought his ass was going to lift off the ground. No defense after that. He didn’t wait for Sonny to make a mistake or wear him down like he usually did. He just overpowered Sonny and went to killing him. He was doing some terrible stuff to Sonny’s chest. Sonny was leaking that old thick liver colored blood out of some holes that looked like he had been shot with Hank Jr’s old Colt 45. I thought you ain’t living long like this. Banjo kept Sonny bald up pretty good, and I was hovering over them pretty close. I didn’t want to miss nothing. I guess down inside I knew nobody else was going to be dumb enough to feed their dog and money to this monster after this spectacle. It took Raul a little while to figure out what was really happening. This was the first time Banjo went to work like this this early. But when he snapped too. They picked up. I won $500 dollars on Sonny’s courtesy scratch against Mark Davis. It was one of the gamest scratches I ever saw. He went down in the front end twice and rolled completely over once and still finished that scratch. I tried to buy him after the match. Even though I didn’t believe he could live. But it would have been worth the gamble. At the time I heard he died. Someone told me recently that he had lived after that match. I doubt it, but I can’t be sure.
CHECK THAT PHONE FOR A DIAL TONE
Well after that the phone went dead. I mean graveyard dead. Nobody was returning my calls. Then I started hearing about the great Andy Capp dog. It took me awhile but I finally got a number on an old boy that owned that dog. So I called R. Hall on the phone. At first he acted like he was interested. I told him I would give him a pound, Andy Capp at 37 and Banjo at 36. Which actually means I was giving him 2lbs. Because Banjo was always a 35lb dog. He would have to do most of the traveling and meet me in North Louisiana at Barry’s place. Which was just like being home to me. Actually better, because I wouldn’t have to worry about anything but Banjo at Barry’s. I would pay all the expenses. First class all the way. Women and wine. I was basically willing to give him the same deal I was offering LG. I told L. Green in front of many witnesses, several times. That I would pay him cash money up front. To put Gr. Ch. Tina against BB Red. All he had to agree to was that they would be left in the pit until one dog could not or would not scratch. LG was a cur. And I can’t swear Hall was as rank as LG was, because I never got a chance to disrespect him in front of 80-100 people like I did LG. But I do know this. The sweeter I made the deal the harder it was to get Hall on the phone. He wasn’t saying he wouldn’t do. He just wouldn’t agree on a forfeit and a date. He just keep dragging it out. This went on for months.
HE IS CHEATING
Awhile before this time I had gotten mixed up with Tony Arichica and the dog that would later be known as Coy’s Ch. Big Red. Now how it came about was this. I matched a young dog into Tony for $300. And he brought Big Red. I brought the young dog basically off the chain. I didn’t even change his feed. And Tony stopped the 18 month old pup in about 48 minutes I believe. My dog was off of Banjo and Little Sister Freebee. I didn’t care for that litter of dogs. And none of them worked out. Other people would have took it a lot slower with them dogs because of how they was breed. And under less stress I’m sure they would have been just fine. But not for me. People said that I didn’t give those Banjo puppies a fair chance. And they was right. But I did give them the same chance that I gave the rest of the dogs I breed up. It wasn’t like I was waiting on those Emile II puppies to get 3 years old before I started them. LOL. I set the same standard for all my dogs. And I F’d off a ton of good breed dogs. I probably ruined more good dogs than the average guy will ever see. I wished I would have had the money and land to have raised 500 dogs at a time. I would have went slower and done a better job on all the dogs I raised. But my budget and land would only accommodate 75-100 dogs at a time. I laid it out in the interview of how my plane worked. You can read it there in greater detail. And on a post I put up. I was not trying to make money selling dogs. I was trying to dominate the Game. And prove that I was the best dog man alive. As far as dominating the Game, I did that. I called out the best dog men and the best dogs of my time. Beat them with first time out dogs that were hardly ever over two years old. As far as being the best dog man alive, I’ll have to leave that for others to decide. So anyway Tony caught me and Ms. Terry at a party one night. And hit me up to put a keep on Big Red for his next match. I didn’t even like that dog. I asked Tony what the purse was on that match? He said, $500. I laughed. I said how you gonna make any money? I conditioned several dogs for men over the years. And I always had an interest of some kind in the outcome. And the dog that I was working. Never did I do one for money. And only once did I do one that I was sure the dog was a cur. And that one had been a nightmare. So I told Tony that I was too busy. But that I would ask Ms. Terry if she wanted to mess with it. She said yes. So I told Tony that he would have to give Terry $150 cash up front, right now. She would put Big Red on the treadmill every night and feed him under my close supervision. And I was not to be associated with the match or held responsible for anything. Yea Right. So we took the dog home after he paid Terry and she got to work. She did about 25% of my conditioning anyway. And Big Red was a better working dog than a match dog. And he started looking real good. She was doing a lot more than just putting him on the mill every night. I was real proud of that girl. She wanted to win not just get paid. Well Tony was less then stable. And about two weeks out he called me and said he wanted to come by and pick up Big Red. He was going to sell him and pay the forfeit. I said now wait a minute. My old lady has been working her ass off. And she is expecting to get to see the fruits of her labor. He said he was jammed up about some bullshit, and had to get some quick cash. I asked how much are you getting for that dog? He said, $500. I said, how much is the forfeit? He said, $250. I said really. The world is coming to an end over $250. WOW. You see that’s how serious your average dog man is about the game. I said, I’ll just buy the dam dog myself and take over the match. So I did. Big Red was matched into Steve Davis and Larry Keys. It was the middle of summer early June I believe. In Texas, East Texas, hot and humid. The air was so thick that night you could have cut it with a knife. Them boys couldn’t condition worth a shit under the best of conditions. They were fat ass drunks. And Terry just flat, out conditioned them. When the match was all but over and you could see that Big Red was surly going to win. Tony and his brother heaved Ms. Terry up on their shoulders and was marching her around and around the pit shouting , T.D. ; T.D. ; T.D. Really rubbing their nose in the fact that a woman had out conditioned them. Ms. Terry’s record was better than mine. She conditioned two dogs, I mean she did all the conditioning in two different matches, and she won both of them. The other one was Ch. Nemo’s first match. He was going against a 2xw and she did all the conditioning and handling in that match and won. She had a perfect record in fast lane competition. Well that was more than them boys could stand. They didn’t say nothing that night. But a few weeks later I started hearing that we had rubbed them. Really? WOW. People really think more of themselves than I do. At the Time $500 wasn’t shit to me. I had no respect for these men. That’s why I sicked my wife on them. They thought they was some big time dudes. I didn’t waist my time with those clowns. It took this kind of bullshit to get me entangled with them. Well I started getting pretty hot. Just when I was about to lose it. I got an idea. I called a local polygraph service and made sure my business was protected under privacy laws. They assured me that everything except murder was. So I made an appointment. The fee was $275 to take a lie detector test. Now I was in the hole on the Big Red dog. So I called Bobby Smith and told him the date and the time to tell Keys. I messed up though, I told Bobby I was going to pay another $275. And Keys was going to set down in that chair and answer the same set of questions I did. Well Bobby gave that pile a heads up. So when the time come Keys and Bobby Jr. was supposed to meet me there. Well they didn’t show up, but I took the test anyway. They asked me not only had I poisoned Larry Keys and Steve Davis in that match. But had I cheated in any way. Then they went on to ask me if I had ever POISONED ANY DOG IN ANY MATCH, OR CHEATED IN ANY WAY EVER. I said no to every question. And on the print out every question and answer was evaluated and scored separately. And beside every answer was RESPONSE TRUTHFUL. I had a certified copy of that test delivered to every magazine in the country. SDJ, FACE YOUR DOGS, and Fat Bills magazine too. Come to find out according to Bobby Smith Jr. who was a good friend of Keys. Him and Keys set down the road and watched until my truck left. Then went and questioned the guy that had given me the test. He told Keys that he was certain that I had answered all the questions truthfully. He didn’t know what had happened to their dog. But nothing that I did was shady at all. Keys questioned the accuracy of a polygraph. The man told him that they are not 100% accurate. And some people can give an inconclusive score. But that is what it would be if there was anything shady going on. INCONCLUSSIVE. But that an A type personality, i.e. people that was high strung like me. And I was very high strung in those days. Didn’t have a chance to beat the machine. I did not get an apology or even an admission of slander. But it shut them down. And I took out a full page add in every magazine about $150 each. And this is what it said:
IF YOU DON’T RECOGNIZE
And BIG BALLS!!!
IT’S BECAUSE YOU DON’T HAVE ANY!
I was on a mission, and you ain’t proved shit if you are cheating. That was an insult to everything I was and believed. I wanted to prove I was better than any man living, as far as fighting dogs goes. Don’t take me wrong. I never thought I was a better person than anyone else. As a human being I was very lacking and I knew that. I always tried to treat people as good as I could. But I wanted to be the best dog man that had ever lived. And I set out to prove it every day. You can’t do that by cheating.
Now the last three chapters including this one. Are all overlapping events. They all happened at the start of and over the course of the summer of 1992. I got busted on a 10lb delivery marijuana charge. I lost a lot of money. And had to pay some big lawyer and bondsman fees. They was stealing two or three dogs a week from me. And whole litters at a time. Tony Arichica set me up with John Smith and stole the whole litter off of my Ch. Leroy Brown dog to BB Red. I didn’t know it was him until years later thank goodness. Big O came and picked up his pup that I had given him at 4 weeks old. Before they was ready to go. It didn’t make any sense at the time. But now I know it was because he knew what they was going to do. And they was supposed to be my friends. Of course nobody but my friends knew where I lived. So in one way or another I knew every time a dog come up missing someone I liked had something to do with it. I didn’t do business with the public at large. I had the dogs I wanted to use in breeding’s. And let the men I like breed their dogs to any of mine for free. But it was getting hard to not offend people when they are asking to breed. So I took out another add:
Open TO Public Stud
Coy’s Gr. Ch. Banjo $3500
Coy’s Ch. Leroy Brown $2500
Coy’s Emile II $1500
The Emile II part was a joke on my part. I was just getting ready to break out the first of his offspring. Nobody knew anything about those dogs yet but me. LOL. That was the best deal I was offering. Bobby said the day I gave him my ad and money. I don’t think you’re going to get a lot of business. I said, I hope not Bobby. That’s the point of the ad. I was trying to get people to leave me alone. I said if I wanted to get rich peddling puppies and stud service. I’d do like them Jeep Dog owners. Open him for $500 and breed him to three bitches a day. Well him and two of his sons. Y’all ever think about it. Them prostitute yards don’t turn down no comers. And I’ll promise you that if three bitches show up at the same time, they all get breed. TO SOMETHING. Oh yes they get mounted to old famous fido for the picture. But you can bet they get stuck to something that ain’t out of sperm also. I never met one dog peddler I trusted. Especially when it comes to a dog deal. I got two phone calls. The first one was a real respectful young man. Said he was in the service. Stationed out in California somewhere. Had a nice breed little Alligator female he wanted to breed to Banjo. Said he wanted to send me $500 dollars to start with. And then send me $200-$300 every chance he got. And when I got all the money. He would bring his bitch as soon as he could afford the trip. I said. Well son why in the world would you do all that? I never bred Banjo to one Alligator bitch. I have no idea if it’s a good thing or a total waste of time. Especially when Gary and Christy Athens got that 7xw Ch. Lion Head open to public stud for $500. And he is the best Alligator bred dog alive. And you know you like Alligator dogs. So I gave him Gary’s number and he called him and made the breeding I guess. I didn’t care much for Gary, but liked Christy a lot, if you know what I mean. LOL. The second one was from the guy that was to buy Banjo. I was out cutting hay one day. Here come Terry carrying the phone. Waving me up toward the house. When I got the tractor up there. I said, who is it? She said some guy that said he wanted to breed three females to Banjo. I thought you might want to talk to him. I laughed. I told her to give me the phone and get me some ice tea. It was a black fella from California. Said he wanted to breed a bitch that came from Vincent Romero. I said, I don’t care if she is a greyhound. The stud fee is $3500 dollars and I ain’t interested in no puppies. I got all the puppies off Banjo bred the way I want them. He said, Oh I want to pay cash and keep all the puppies. I just wanted you to know that these are quality bred females I got. I said, FEMALES. He said yes. I got one that will be ready to breed in two or three days, she has a full sister that is in heat a week behind her. And I got another female that started bleeding today. How much will you charge me to breed all three of them? I said, well let me see now. I’ll breed the first one for $3500, the second one for $3500, and I won’t charge you a penny extra to breed that third bitch. You have to drop them off here. And pick them up when I’m through. You have to come yourself both times. He said wow that’s $10,500. I said, you add pretty well. He said, no discount? I told him the same thing I told Bobby Smith. Then he asked me if Banjo was for sale. I said sure he is. He said really, how much? I said, $15,000. He said, you didn’t think about that very long. I said, now son you don’t think you are the first person to ask me that are you? I got a friend named Big O offers to buy him at least once a week. I set that price a long time ago. Big O wants to give me $10,000. But I’ve thought about it a lot. And the dog is a very good deal for $15,000. He said, you would sell your best match dog. I said that’s all I sell, is dogs that have won at least one match. And I sell them all the time. He said well I guess you’d need a deposit? Would three thousand hold him for three days until I get there? This is about the time I started thinking, this guy is full of shit. But I said yes it would. But it would be none refundable. He agreed. He hollered at a woman somewhere in another room. I heard her answer. He told her to get $3000 out of the nightstand drawer and go down to the corner and send it Western Union to Texas to a man named. Then he stopped to get the right spelling of my name. I gave it to him. And he in turn gave it to the woman. He never hung that phone up. About twenty minutes later she returned with the conformation number. He got Western Union on the three way and I heard it. Said Thank You, and I’ll see you in three days. I hung up the phone. Terry said, that was a long phone call even for you. I would spend hours a day back then talking to Bobby Smith in Dallas, Texas. Or John Roach in Kansas City. Or some prospective opponent. She said, did he really want to breed three females to Banjo? I said, he must have. He just bought him.
GO WEST YOUNG MAN
Three days later he showed up with the rest of the money in a van, Took Banjo and left for California. He would call me every two or three days and ask me what I thought about this breeding or that breeding. He was always real respectful, and we had real civil talks. I wanted Banjo to do as good as he could. He called me one day and said that he had Banjo hooked for $50,000 dollars. I wasn’t shocked. I knew them gangbangers did outrageous stuff like that AGAINST EACH OTHER, all the time. I would hear about one for 100k or 50k or 30k etc. I would do good to raise 10 myself. Said that he was going to use Romero like he usually did to condition. But Vince had advised him to put the dog back in the hands of the man that had brought him this far. If that was possible. I said, sure it was. I would take it as a great honor to be involved. He wanted to know my terms. I said you pay all my expenses. $1000 up front. You send a driver in a van to pick me and Banjo up one week before the match. I want a return plane ticket home given to me before I get in the van. Put me and Banjo in a motel within ten miles of the match site. Guarantee I get to bet my money on the front money. Up to $10,000. I’ll bet the rest on the side. He agreed and told me he would get back to me. Well I didn’t hear from him for a while after that. Then one day he called me. Didn’t say anything about the match. Was kinda rude. I thought maybe he was drinking and having a bad day or something. Some guys are like that. I didn’t take it to serious. But it happened a few times and I was beginning to get annoyed. Things where getting busy again now that Banjo was gone. So I wrote Banjo off. You never know what gets in a mans head. I didn’t care. I had things to do. Well I was at a show in Louisiana just as a spectator. LG was there. Me and LG didn’t care for each other. Actually I hated his ass. He was being a smart ass. So I called out Gr. Ch. Tina in front of everybody. I told LG I would pay him twice as much as his top match money. I never saw or heard him match a dog for over $300 dollars in his life. So I was willing to pay him $600 to match Tina into BB Red. No weight. They only thing he had to agree to. Was we would pit the dogs, and fight under Cajun Rules with a neutral ref. And he had to leave her down until one dog was counted out on the scratch line. I did this several times. He refused again. But then he said, WE got a 35lb male opened to you for any money. I knew then what had happened to my friend from California. I was mad as hell. I stomped a brand new $150 cowboy hat into the ground. I went and got in my car and drove straight back to Texas. When I got home, I called my friend. I told him I don’t know who the fuck you think your dealing with. But I ain’t no dog peddling whore. And I sure ain’t scarred of no dam dog. Bring Banjo to 37lbs and I will kill him for you. I was willing to fight him at 37lbs. I would bet the same $15,000 I sold him for. Don’t ever threaten me with a $50 dog and a two bit man. Because I’ll kill them both. You bought a dog. I don’t buy Gr. Champions. I build them in the back yard. And I kill them in the front yard. Well, that F’d up his mind real bad. He didn’t know what to do. But that is what you get when you hook your wagon to a three hundred dollar bum like LG Green. What a dip shit. You see I was writing this story at that time. And I couldn’t think of a better ending than The Texas Ironman Killed his Ch. Nemo dog Killing the Great Gr. Ch. Banjo. Win or lose I would have preferred that ending. I had to settle with killing that ass holes carrier. I guess that will have to do.
By COY DICKENSON, a.k.a. THE TEXAS IRONMAN