In the Words of Sport Magazine: Carl Mulleneaux

Carl Mulleneaux returned to the Packers from three years in the service in the middle of 1945. Hoping to restart his career at age 29, he reported to training camp in 1946, but his career abruptly ended on opening day in a 30-7 loss to the Bears after a blind side hit on a kickoff. The Milwaukee Journal noted, “It was not as rough as some Packer-Bear games, but it had a few rough spots – roughest when 240 pound John Schiechl knocked out Carl Mulleneaux. Mulleneaux was carried from the field.” The Green Bay Press-Gazette added that Bears lineman John Schiechl “caught him under the chin with both ‘mitts.’” Cliff Christl reported in Mudbaths and Bloodbaths that Mulleneaux suffered five dislocated vertebrae, a concussion, a broken nose, facial cuts and three broken teeth on that hit.

In Jack Sher’s article “Packers of Green Bay” in the December 1946 issue of Sport Magazine, Sher describes the hit:

Mid-way through the game, he [Don Hutson] saw Carl (Moose) Mulleneaux put on ice, watched as they carried him off the field, his face cut and bloody. Moose was out cold, and this was a guy who had decoyed at end in many a ball game so that Don Hutson could snare a pass and leg it for a TD…

Down on the sidelines that day, they dropped Mulleneaux right at my feet alongside the bench. He looked as though he had walked into a barrage of Joe Louis punches. He didn’t move. Trainer Bud Jorgensen worked over him frantically. It took a full ten minutes to bring him around and then he began to moan, move his arms, talk and swear and thrash his legs as though he were still in the game.

To me, as I watched Mulleneaux struggle for consciousness, he wasn’t just another ballplayer knocked stiff in a game. He was someone with whom I had lived and eaten and traveled, shared bull sessions and laughs and confidences. He was a guy I liked all the way. I remembered that just before the game, Tony Canadeo, the halfback, had said, ”I wonder if Moose will throw up. Ever since I’ve known him he’s always heaved up his cookies just before a Bear game. The excitement always gets him.”

Seeing Moose stretched out, turning and twisting, I thought about the first time I had ever seen him. It had been ten days before, on that gloomy train back to Green bay after the Packers had dropped a grueling [preseason] game to the Giants in New York. Lambeau was locked up in a compartment, Hard-faced and angry. His players were sprawled through two cars, dejected, tired. Moose saw me standing in the aisle, looking like a stranger at a funeral, and he asked me to sit down next to him.

“We’ll get over this,” he smiled slowly. “We’re always like this after we lose one. Curly is worse than any of us. We all hate to lose, but it hits him harder.”

According to Christl, Mulleneaux showed up five weeks later at the rematch, although in street clothes because he had been released after the injuries. He looked for Schiechl at Wrigley Field outside the Bears’ locker room, but the Bear mauler apologized, and Moose accepted it.

1946cmulleneaux  1946tcanadeo

Custom cards are colorized.

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