Dredge Central, LLC of Goodlettsville, Tennessee learned on November 19 that company founder Don King had died.
King graduated from Hillsboro High School in Nashville, Tennessee, attended the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tennessee, and served in the U.S. Navy in WWII. In his earlier years King delivered telegrams by bicycle for Western Union, was a bellboy at the historic Hermitage Hotel in Nashville, sold cars, started the first rolling restaurant in Nashville, and eventually entered the construction business, which led to a more than 50-year career in the international dredge manufacturing industry.
His career began with American Machinery Corporation (AMMCO), continued with Dixie Dredge, Dredge Masters International (DMI), Dredge and Marine Corporation (DMC), King Dredge and eventually to Dredge Central, LLC, which he founded and then retired from in 2016.
One of King’s favorite stories involved a trip to Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo) in the 1970’s during the leadup to the boxing fight between heavyweights George Foreman and Muhammad Ali – “The Rumble in the Jungle.” King had reserved a hotel room, but when he arrived he was presented with the best suite in the building—a mix up resulting from the fact that Ali’s manager’s name was also Don King. He didn’t explain the name challenge or pass on the room assignment, enjoyed the stay with amenities, and closed the dredge sale.
King’s dredging career involved work as a contractor on from road building and dam levee construction projects, domestic and international sales of new dredges, ownership of dredge building companies, development of a surplus market site known as the “Dredge & Pit Trader” – www.DredgeandPitTrader.com, and founding Dredge Central, LLC, a company based on remanufacturing dredging equipment to provide used equipment.
King was an innovator, an active entrepreneur, and at the age of 91, was still looking for great opportunities in dredging and other endeavors.