By Ralphine Major
The sense of community for a rural school in northeast Knox County was strong. It was evident by the support they showed to the Gibbs High School basketball team Bob Dagley coached to a 31-2 record in 1965. Many families of the players had strong ties to the school.
Gene Cantley was the youngest member on Dagley’s team, and his family was one that had a special connection to the school. Rowena Cantley, Gene’s mother, worked approximately ten years as an employee in the Gibbs cafeteria. I remember seeing her serving food in the cafeteria year after year.
Gene’s father was employed for thirty-three years on the campus of The University of Tennessee in the printing department. Though the facility was moved several times, the last location he worked at was across from the football stadium. Gene remembers that his father always enjoyed seeing the players come down the hill during spring practice. As football season nears, that is a sight Volunteer fans certainly enjoy!
Family is also important to the Cantleys as shown in this photo of a special time together taken by Jennifer’s husband, Tim Graves. Gene’s sons and daughter bear a striking resemblance to him.
Piddle Diddle update:
Thunder Road Author Rally, Maynardville Public Library, September 12, from 9-1.