Ambrose F. "Bud" Dudley, founder and former executive director of the AutoZone Liberty Bowl Football Classic, passed away today after a long illness at the age of 88.
Steve Ehrhart, Dudley's successor and current executive director of the AutoZone Liberty Bowl, said, "Bud was one of the giants of the college football world. There wasn't a finer gentleman in the bowl business than Bud. While he'll be remembered as a great promoter and a progressive thinker, our intent is to always preserve Bud's mission for this bowl. And that's emphasizing patriotism and liberty."
Visitation will be Thursday, June 19, from 5pm to 7pm at Canale Funeral Home (2700 Union Avenue Extended). Services will be Friday, June 20, at 1:30pm at St. Louis Catholic Church (203 White Station Road).
Any contributions may be made to Shelby Residential & Vocational Services. SRVS is located at 3592 Knight Arnold Road, Memphis, Tennessee 38118.
Bud Dudley's dream of hosting a college football bowl game in his hometown of Philadelphia became reality in 1959 when he founded the Liberty Bowl. After five years in Philadelphia, Dudley played the game in Atlantic City Convention Center in 1964 where the Liberty Bowl was the first bowl game ever played indoors.
In 1965, Dudley moved the Liberty Bowl to its current home in Memphis. Over the years the Liberty Bowl, now known as the AutoZone Liberty Bowl, has flourished and stood as a shining symbol of American patriotism.