Club baseball player died July 29 in car accident; remembered fondly by friends and family
For Mary and Doug Moors Jr., the mother and father of Doug “Dozer” Moors, July 29 was a normal evening.
Mary received a text message from Dozer on the way home from a semi-pro soccer match in Troy. His favorite team had won and he was going back to friend Eric Hergenreder’s house to spend the night.
Everything seemed normal.
The next morning was anything but.
“Frozen," Mary said. "I was just frozen. I don’t know how else to describe it."
Around 7 a.m., the Moors’ had a knock on their door from police. An officer told them their son had died in a car accident on I-75 in Troy.
Dozer, 22, reportedly died on the scene after Hergenreder’s car struck a party bus that was parked on the side of the road for repairs.
Hergenreder suffered serious injuries and was taken to a local hospital. He recovered from his injuries.
“No one wanted to believe it was real,” Doug said. “I still don’t sometimes. I just keep telling myself about all of the good times and try to make it okay, but you really can’t.”
Dozer, a Goodrich native, was a senior completing his final semester at CMU.
“Dozer Being Dozer”
Dozer's roommate, Michael Manarino, was one of the first people to find out about the incident.
Dozer and Manarino, a senior, planned on living together for the fall semester until the news broke. They met in the same fifth grade class and had been friends since.
“(Dozer) was always someone I could count on and he’s just been that person since I got to know him,” Manarino said. “We didn't have to be going out or partying. I just loved all of the little things about him.”
Doug said Dozer created trouble as a toddler but he made sure he had quality friends growing up.
“Picture a kid barely over a year old pushing things and finding ways to get into trouble, yet the things getting him in trouble shouldn't be possible at his age,” Doug said. “I think that kind of showed who he was, Dozer being Dozer. No matter what, he would make sure the people he was with were in a good mood.”
Dozer’s aunt, Kim Moors, said he would take any chance to have fun. She recalled Dozer's experience at a family get-together.
"Around 200 people were there and (Dozer) had the time of his life,” Kim said. “When we got home, the first thing he said was ‘I want my birthday party at the same place.’ I asked him who he wanted to go.
“Dozer smiled and said ‘the same people would be fine by me. I just want to have a good time.'”
Mary said Dozer impacted many lives in his hometown. He couldn’t go anywhere in Troy without knowing someone.
“You pick a restaurant or whatever, it didn’t matter, Dozer knew somebody there and would go have a conversation with them,” Mary said. “None of us wanted those times to end, but I believe he will truly get remembered for the person he was — caring about others more than himself.”
Baseball Meant Everything
Though he also played basketball in high school, nothing compared to his passion for the diamond.
“All of those summers with (his teammates) playing baseball was where he was truly happy,” Doug said.
Manarino said he would always know what happened in any of Dozer’s games because “it was where he truly belonged.”
“If there was one thing Dozer said could bring him up on a bad day, it was going to play a baseball game,” Manarino said. “He loved the sport and couldn't get enough of it. Trust me, he could not stop talking about it.”
Dozer made the varsity team each year at Goodrich High School. He played on travel teams in the summer, but Doug believes Dozer was happiest while playing Club Baseball.
“He loved that team,” he said. “It kind of gave him a second family.”
Teammate Nick McNamara, 21, of Grand Rapids, said the team felt lost without him on and off the field.
“When I found out, I just couldn't stop thinking about it. I still haven’t,” McNamara said. “It doesn't seem right without him here.
"It’s a hole that cannot be filled.”
CMU Club Baseball President Alex Cesal couldn't find enough words to describe what he meant to the team from a mental standpoint.
“(Dozer) just loosened everyone up. If we were losing he found a way to pick us back up,” Cesal said. “You simply can’t just replace someone like him, but I can tell you we won’t ever forget him.”
Remembering Dozer’s Legacy
Mary said Dozer would want to be remembered as someone who would do whatever it takes for someone he loves.
It didn't matter the situation he was in; the people in his life meant more than anything.
“My son had the biggest heart and I know he would want people to remember him for how he treated them,” Mary said. “That’s all he ever cared about. I believe he will be thought of that way.”
Zach Kallgren, another teammate of Dozer, said he wouldn't forget him for the way he played the game.
“He never gave up on a play or game, and that really reflected who he was as a person,” he said.
Doug believes the way Dozer saw every opportunity in life speaks to his character. He would never turn down any challenge.
“If this was someone else, Dozer wouldn't leave them alone, and that’s why we all try to be there for each other now,” he said. “He taught us to be this way. There is nothing more Dozer would want to be remembered by.”