Missouri fan goes beyond cheering

Friday, April 17, 2009 | 12:01 a.m. CDT
Missouri sports fan Gerry Moore is also a member of the MU Alumni Association, even though he never attended the university.

ST.PETERS — Gerry Moore, 63, grew up in Alabama and graduated from the University of Alabama in 1966 with a degree in engineering. That same year, Moore decided to move to Missouri to work for McDonnell Douglas, now called Boeing. 

“My parents were always big supporters of state universities," Moore said. "Since I lived in Missouri and love college football, I started attending games at the University of Missouri.”

Moore, of St. Peters, has only missed one game since he first started buying Missouri football and basketball season tickets in 1970. Although he never attended the university, Moore is also a member of the MU Alumni Association.

Moore had attended a few Missouri games before he bought his first season ticket in 1970.  Moore now buys nine season tickets each year.  One for his wife, one for his son, Brian Moore, one for himself and six others for friends.

Moore’s wife, Joy Moore, wanted to attend MU but instead went to and graduated from Fontbonne University in St. Louis.

“Her dad wouldn’t let her go to the University of Missouri because it was too far away for him, and he wanted her to stay close to home,” Moore said.

Moore admits that his wife isn’t a basketball fan.

“She loves football but has no interest in basketball,” Moore said. “I’ll be in the living room watching the game, my son will be in his room watching the game and she will be in her room watching something else. She will come out every once in a while and ask what the score is and then go back into her room and continue watching her show,” Moore laughs.

Moore has collected a lot of Missouri sports memorabilia over the years. He has a hat shaped like a tiger's head that used to be commonly seen on fans' heads at Missouri events, but is now a rare sight. Moore said the hat is worth a lot of money. He also has many cups and mugs and other items people have made for him. His wife made a latch-hook rug that has Mizzou at the top with a tiger lying in the grass.  

Moore says his most prized possession is his poster-sized image of the 2003 Nebraska-Missouri football game. The coaches and players from that game signed the poster. That game was also Moore’s favorite because of his rivalry with Nebraska fans he knows through Junior Chamber International.

Moore is the founder of the St. Peters Jaycees, an organization that strives to improve their community through service projects.  Moore is a part of the JCI Senators, the highest national honor you can earn as a member of a Jaycees.

Every other year, for the past 25 years, the JCI Senators from Missouri get together with the JCI Senators from Nebraska for the football game.

“Nebraska always beat us and it felt great to finally beat them and get to brag about it,” Moore said about the 2003 game.

Moore started working with fellow alum Irene Keller on the Missouri Tiger Board. Keller and Moore both became alumni in 1986. Keller asked him one day if he was an alumni member and he wasn’t at the time.

“She told me if I wasn’t an alumni member, I couldn’t help her anymore," Moore said. "She gave me a membership form to fill out and that’s how I became an alumni member.”

Todd McCubbin, the executive director of the MU Alumni Association, says of the 37,700 members, a few thousand aren’t graduates of the university. McCubbin says there are different ways you can be a part of the alumni association as in Moore and Keller’s cases. McCubbin says you can attend the school but not graduate from here. or you can be a faculty member and be a part of the association.

Besides being part of the alumni association, Moore also serves on the Tiger Board of St. Louis helping with various fundraisers to benefit the university.  Moore and his wife have donated about $30,000 to the Tiger Scholarship fund.

“We just like going and enjoy the experience of the games with our family and friends,” Moore said.

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