An association for alumni and supporters of The Daily Texan

Friends of The Daily Texan

An association for alumni and supporters of The Daily Texan

Friends of The Daily Texan

An association for alumni and supporters of The Daily Texan

Friends of The Daily Texan

Contact Information
Friends of The Daily Texan, Inc.
1401 Lavaca St
Austin, TX 78701

[email protected]

In Memoriam: Murray Lawrence Forsvall

Murray Lawrence Forsvall

Died July 12, 2023

Dallas, Texas

Murray Lawrence Forsvall, who spent his life as a sports participant and started his career as a sportswriter for The Daily Texan in the 1950s, passed away on July 12 at the age of 91 in Dallas.

Forsvall not only was an accomplished sportswriter, but a golfer, runner, and racecar driver. He spent most of his career with the Dallas Times Herald.

An Austin native, it was fitting that Forsvall grew up in a North Austin house that backed up to the 12th hole of what was then the Austin Country Club.

Except for two years with the U.S. Army in Europe, Forsvall spent his whole life in Texas, with the exception of two years he spent in the Europe. He attended a Bachelor of Journalism from The University of Texas at Austin. On graduation, he had a short stint with the Sweetwater Reporter before Army service. In 1957, he worked for the San Antonio Express, and a year later accepted a job as a golf columnist for the Dallas Times Herald. He spent the next 19 years in various positions with the Times Herald.

Throughout his life, participation in sports was important, for his own recreation and for his work. Golf was Forsvall’s first sports love, and as a youngster he was fortunate to have legendary golf teacher Harvey Penick as his mentor. Beginning at age 15, Forsvall earned his first bid as a finalist in the Austin City Junior Golf Tournament. He also was on the UT Austin golf team that went to the finals for the championship. He often called that experience his best-ever tournament because of the quality of the golfers he faced.

After moving to Dallas, Forsvall met and married Edna Flaskrud, who had moved to Texas from Wisconsin. They had two children, Cynthia Lynn, and Clinton Forsvall. Forsvall described Edna as a wonderful mother, taking care of the children while he worked early and late as a sportswriter. They had been married 19 years before she died of cancer.

During the early 1960s and into the 1970s Forsvall participated in sports car racing. His first race cars were MGs and Porsches. Later, with partner Jim Clem, he drove a Lynx Formula V, qualifying for the national championships where he finished as high as 10th.

Already a developing distance runner, he turned to that sport both to help him get through Edna’s passing and to search for a healthier lifestyle. He progressed from half marathons to the stage where he thought about doing a marathon, but not before completing a half marathon. He bragged to an old friend about completing the half. She said, “Why didn’t you do the whole thing?”

That bothered him so he went on a crash course to do a marathon in slightly over a month. It was during a 19-mile training run that an incident occurred that would change his life forever. Tiring quickly with several miles to go, a friendly lady passed him and paused for a moment to encourage him. That lady he found out later was Betty Noland whom he befriended and years later would marry.

Running and competing became a way of life for the couple. They would go on to compete in races in the 50 states and many countries. Forsvall completed 31 marathons, 75 triathlons, and 99 duathlons.

Forsvall is survived by his wife, Betty Forsvall; daughter Cynthia Barlow and her husband Russel of Mondovi, Wisconsin; son Clint Forsvall and wife Susan of Plano; and grandchildren Dallas, Russel Jr., and Tyler Barlow. Zoey and Ziggy Forsvall, and three great grandkids.