Alabama Not Just Football: 30 Amazing People Who Were Built By Bama

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Winston Groom

You may not immediately recognize the name Winston Groom, but I’m sure you recognize his most famous creation. Winston Groom is the man who brought us Forrest Gump.

Born in Washington, D.C. and raised in Mobile County, Groom graduated from the University of Alabama in 1965. After graduating, Groom served in the US Army. After completing a tour of duty in Vietnam, he moved back to Washington to pursue journalism.

In 1975, he retired from journalism to become a novelist. In 1984, Groom’s Conversations with the Enemy: The Story of PFC Robert Garwood was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in General Non-Fiction.

The next year Groom moved back to Mobile to start what would become his most famous novel. In 1986, Forrest Gump was published. Though the book was popular upon publication, it didn’t become a bestseller until Paramount’s 1994 film adaptation starring Tom Hanks and directed by Robert Zemeckis.

Forrest Gump was the top-grossing movie in the US in 1994 and won the 1995 Academy Award for Best Picture as well as five other Academy Awards and three Golden Globes. In spite of the success of the movie, Groom did not receive much recognition for providing the plot. He was not mentioned in any of the six Oscar acceptance speeches and was involved in a compensation dispute with Paramount.

After Forrest Gump, Groom continued to write, focusing on historical non-fiction about American Wars. Groom also published an illustrated history of Alabama football in 2000 and a national championship follow up edition in 2010.

Winston Groom currently lives in Point Clear, AL.

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