After completing Woodrow Wilson High School in 1932 Crow was unable to attend college at the time because of the Great Depression, Crow then worked after high school at some odd jobs. then In 1933, Crow landed a job for about $13 a week as a runner for Mercantile National Bank in Dallas while attending night school in accounting at Southern Methodist University. Upon graduation in 1938, he was at the age of twenty-four the youngest CPA in Texas. He then worked for three years as a Certified Public Accountant before joining the United States Navy in 1940. He utilized his background in accounting and was offered a commission auditing the books of defense contractors. After World War II, he remained with the Navy for another year to handle final settlements with its contractors. He left the Navy after achieving the rank of commander and then returned to Dallas and saw opportunities for the growth of the city. He became an agent for North American Van Lines, a moving company. Shortly thereafter, he worked as a wholesale grain merchandiser, tripled the sizes of the warehouses, and erected new loading facilities. Once the grain business faded, he switched at the age of thirty-three to the burgeoning field of warehouse real estate development.