By Charlie Sedman: Raymond Earl Moss Jr. was killed in a small plane crash on October 7, 1976, two days shy of his 40th birthday. His son, Ray (Trey) Moss III was probably a year old when he died.
Ray’s father was a major league pitcher for the Brooklyn Robins (later to become the Dodgers) from 1926-30 and Boston Braves (1931). His dad lived to be 96 years old, passing in 1998, and his mother lived to be 101, passing in 2007. Ray, his father, and brother-in-law started a very successful chain of convenience stores – The Golden Gallon – in 1959 as an outgrowth of the family dairy, and Ray Jr. was returning from a trip for that business when his private plane crashed near Dalton, GA.
If you saw the recent hit by Jadeveon Clowney for South Carolina in the Outback Bowl that probably allowed his team to win, Ray Moss Jr. made a similar hit on a punt return against Baylor Prep in 1954, with his team trailing 7-6, and picked up the ball, returning it for a touchdown and an eventual 18-7 win; in effect clinching Central’s fourth straight state football championship, and him a scholarship to UT. I, as an 8-year old, saw and heard it, and it was the most electrifying moment I ever witnessed at a live sporting event.