Wednesday, March 31, 2010

REGINA PATS - FRAN "THE GOLDEN HAWK" HUCK

by Ron “Scoreboard” Johnston

I had the honour of getting to know Fran over a span of four years as I worked alongside of him. For I was trying to get one of the best ever Regina Pats into the Saskatchewan Hall of Fame. To me, he was one of the best. His number seven, a number that should have been retired long ago should be hanging in the rafters of Brandt Centre.


Fran Huck was inducted at the 40th Annual Induction Dinner on Saturday, June 17, 2006, at the Conexus Arts Centre in Regina. For that special occasion, my wife and I sat at his special table along with his Regina Law Office Staff.

Huck was born and raised in Regina and developed his hockey within the Regina Pats minor hockey system. He made the Regina Pat Canadians as a 15-year-old before moving up and joining the Pats for the 1962-63 season where Fran played in 33 games and 6 play-off games. (Photo: taken from the Winnipeg Jets Memorial Page) - www.curtiswalker.com/jets/playerdetails.aspx?key=132 -

The following season, on Thursday, October 17, at Saskatoon, Regina's coach, Dunc Fisher, started a new line with centre Fran Huck, right winger Andy Black, and left winger Gary Dresdal. At that time the Regina games were being broadcast over radio station CKCK. I can still remember after one of the broadcasts an elderly lady called the radio station and asked why Fran Huck was dressed all in black? The explanation was that it was a play on their names, HUCK-DRESDAL-BLACK - “Huck Dressed in all Black”.

Fran was the scoring leader that season, finishing with 153 points, scoring a record 86 goals. Selected on the First League All-Star Team, plus winning the SJHL League Most Valuable Player Award (Leo Parker Trophy) as well as the Scoring Championship (Charles McCook Trophy).

In the play-offs on Thursday, Fran, 5' 6”, 158 pounds, scored his fifteenth hat trick of the season as he helped the Regina Pats to an 8-3 victory over Weyburn Red Wings at the Regina Exhibition Stadium to help the Pats come back to win the series. Fran was picked up by the SJHL League Winners, Estevan Bruins in the Abbott Cup against the Edmonton Oil Kings. He was also picked up by the Oil Kings who lost to the Toronto Marlboros in the Memorial Cup. The final game of that series was televised by the CTV network as they picked up the game in the second period. It became the first ever Memorial Cup final to be broadcast live across Canada.

In Fran's final season, 1964-65, he finished second in the League Scoring with 138 points, and 77 goals. He was selected on the League Second All-Star Team and, once again for the second straight year, won the Most Valuable Player Award. That year Fran was tagged with the nickname of "The Golden Hawk" The nickname was given to him because Huck and his linemates Andy Black and Barry Meissner wore gold helmets.


Photo's: Andy Black - Ron Johnston file - Fran Huck (Fran's Collection) - Barry Meissner Ron Johnston file


"The Gold Helmet was Andy's idea. I don't know why he thought about it but he had a flair for that type of thing. He showed up one day with our helmets and he had painted them gold. We didn't think anything about it. We just put them on. There wasn't any design behind it. I just put it on.'' (Photo: Ron "Scoreboard" Johnston)

During 1963-64 season, Fran scored 107 goals in 90 games, including 5 game with Estevan and 5 with Edmonton in the Memorial Cup. In his final season (1964-65) he had 105 goals in 80 games, including 3 games with Edmonton in the Memorial Cup.

The following season 1965-66 the nineteen year old played with Jackie McLeod's Canadian Olympic Team alongside another Ex-Regina Pat player, Lorne Davis, plus Ex-Weyburn Red Wings Morris Mott. Huck was also selected to the all-star team that year. Fran decided to focus on a law degree and decided to continue as an amateur player by entering the national program.


After four seasons in the national program, Huck started his professional hockey career with the Montreal Voyageurs of the American hockey League (AHL). In 1971 he played with the Denver Spurs of the Western Hockey League (WHL). The same season he played with the NHL Montreal Canadiens and was later traded to the St. Louis Blues before playing in the World Hockey Association with the Winnipeg Jets and Minnesota Fighting Saints. By the end of his career in 1978, he had played in 251 games and scored 212 points. (Photo: HHOF-000054-0045)

Fran and three Winnipeg businessmen, Harry Buekert, Arnold De Fehr and Marsdon Fenwick bought the Junior Franchise in the 1980-81 season. Huck, who coached St. Boniface Mohawks of the Central Amateur Senior Hockey League the previous season, guided them to the Allan Cup Western Final against Spokane Flyers. Huck and Buekert coached the junior club to be known as the Warriors.


In 1999 Fran became one of just 90 elite hockey players to hold a position in the International Ice Hockey Federation’s (IIHF) Hockey Hall of fame. At the age of 53, Huck was inducted into the Hall of Fame based on his playing internationally with the Canadian National team during the 1960’s. (Photo: Huck with his Hall of Fame Induction plaque - Regina Sun Newspaper - photo by Terry Chevaller)

REGINA PATS - DOUG WICKENHEISER


Doug was chosen first over all by the Montreal Canadiens in the 1980 NHL draft. Three years later he was traded to the St. Louis Blues who's General manager was Ron Caron. Caron was the one who happened to draft him three years earlier.

A serious knee injury, resulting from a car accident during a St. Louis Blues outing, had him miss about a year of playing hockey. In August 1994 he developed a cyst in his wrist and, after surgery, discovered a rare form of cancer that returned three years later in his lung.

In the 1987-88 season Doug was claimed by Vancouver Canucks. He had brief stints with the New York Rangers and Washington Capitals ending his 10 years NHL career. He produced 111 goals, 165 assists and 276 points in 556 games; 11 points in 41 play-off games. Doug also played with the Canadian National Team in 1988-89. Doug cam back to St. Louis where he and his wife, Dianna, opened a nursery and frozen custard business in St. Peters.

Doug played for the Regina Pats from 1977-78 to 1979-90 season and was the older brother of Kirt Wickenheiser who played 1981-82 to 1883-84. Their cousin, Hayley Wickenheiser,
was known for playing with the Canadian Olympic Hockey Team and also played for the Women's Softball Team in the 2000 Summer Games.

A Leisure Centre/Rick on Rochdale Blvd., in North-West Regina, was named in his honour.
The Regina Pats honoured one of the WHL team's all-time greats, Doug Wickenheiser, On Saturday, March 13, 1999, at the Agridom on “Wick's Night”. This picture shows his wife, Dianne (rear right), sister-in-law Donna Wickenheiser (rear left), and the Wickenheisers' four-year-old twin daughters Rachel and Daitlin. Doug died January 12, 1999, after a long battle with
cancer.
A TRIP TO FLIN FLON, MANITOBA


by: Ron "Scoreboard" Johnston

The name Flin Flon came from a British author, J.R. Preston Muddock, who wrote a science fiction book. The main character being a New York grocer and amateur scientist with the name Josiah Flintabbatey Flonatin. A copy of the book was found and read by prospector, Tom Creighton, in northern Manitoba in 1915. Shortly thereafter, while hunting moose in the Flin Flon lake area, he fell through the ice. Beneath the surface, the rock bed of the lake shimmered with what he recognized as a mineral treasure and Creighton staked his claim. He proposed the lake be named Flin Flon after the fictional character.

Back in the sixties and seventies, a trip to Flin Flon was a long and tiring experience, taking most of the day. It was about the same distance as travelling to Calgary, Alberta. The only difference being, we were heading north-east.

Everyone would get on the bus in the morning and not arrive in the mining city until night for a weekend double-header.

As we left the Province of Saskatchewan, and entered Manitoba, the thought of making that long tedious trip north up # 10 hwy, going through the forestry and around those many lakes as not very welcome. During the last hour, as we approached Flin Flon, the highway started to make many twists and turns. Everywhere you looked there was Manitoba precambrian rock.

I can remember one trip in 1967, we had a rookie goalie by the name of Ken Friesen. As we approached Flin Flon, he saw the airport search-light on the right side of the bus. After making another turn, it was on the left side. Ken let out a hollor and said, "How big is this Flin Flon? Man! They have two airports!" The whole bus let out a roar of laughter at his surprising assumption. After two or more trips to Flin Flon one gets to know all those turns. As the bus came around the last turn, at the city limits, a statue of Josiah Flintabbatey Flonatin welcomed us.

Many of the hockey players hated going to Flin Flon, because the local Bombers Junior Hockey Team were known for playing rough and fights always erupted during those games. The local boys got their toughness from working in the mines day after day, for $300.00 a month when not playing hockey.

The Bombers knew they had a good chance of winning the first game if they capitalized on our being tired from the long bus trip. They would really be rough at the start of the game, getting a fast start on the visitors. In my rookie season we had no problem with Flin Flon. We averaged 13 goals a game against them that year.

In 1974 Pats trainer Norm Fong was also the Regina Junior Rams trainer Norm suggested to coach Turner that he should try Big Bob Poley, (6’3”, 240 pounds) as their policeman for that season. Although he wasn't a great skater, the opposition took notice of his size every time he stepped on the ice. On the trip to Flin Flon, Big Bob and two other players were walking down Main street. Passers by would stop and look in awe, for they had never seen anyone that big in Flin Flon. For that matter, neither had the Bomber players.

The small city was built around the famous HBM&S Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Company Limited, on the Saskatchewan-Manitoba border.


The first thing you would see as you left the Royal Hotel, was that everywhere you went you were walking on rock. The sewer pipes were right out in the open, above ground, encased by wooden planks that doubled as sidewalks. The skyline was dominated by two structures owned by the Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Company: the massive red head frame of the north mine shaft, and the towering smelter smoke stack stretching into the northern sky.


In 1935 the Mining Company built an in door rink called the Main Arena. In 1960 Company President, C.V. Witney, approved a grant to repair and enlarge the old rink. To-day, the Arena is named Whitney Forum and seats about 2,000 people.

I can remember the players telling me about this famous Shorty Russick's Pool Hall located half a block down the main street on the same side of the street as the hotel. I am glad I went out of my way to explore it. It was something I will never forget, like going back in time. When I found the entrance I opened the door and, to my surprise, directly in front of me I saw three steps going down directly and was then confronted with a huge rock. I walked up and over that famous rock and there stood another door. As I opened that door, I could see old timers seated around the walls playing different kinds of card games. The pool tables were something else. The floor of the pool room was not level and they planted the tables right on top of the rock. One of the many tables had one side where the legs were about two feet high while on the other side it was the normal length.

One of the Pat players mentioned to me that there was another pool hall down the main street, just inside the Saskatchewan border, in the town of Creighton. The floors there were level, but the tables were not as good to play on.

One year it was so cold, the temperature was a minus 65 degrees farenheight with the wind chill at a killing minus 95. That was one time I would rather have been on one of our Western Coast trips to Victoria. It was so cold that coach Bob Turner arranged for taxi cabs to take the players the one and a half blocks to Witney Forum. By the time all the players were loaded into the cabs there was no room for us. Coach Turner and I recklessly endangered life and limb as we ran up the Third Avenue hill from the hotel and down the half block to the rink. I don't remember who got to the rink first, Bob or me. While the Pats got dressed and had their warm-up, I went to the concession booth and had their famous chicken-in-a-mug and a large cup of hot chocolate to thaw my thoroughly chilled innards.

In comparison to the rough and tumble action experienced in the weekend series, the friendly, accommodating attitude of the citizens in general was refreshing. An example of this was when, on one of our trips there, I happened to notice a nice blue western type man's suit at Ross Men's Style Shop next to our Royal Hotel, on Main Street. I kept eyeing it every time I went by. Finally on Saturday, an hour before closing time, I went in and decided to buy that suit. I never saw people move so fast to try and have it ready in time. They sent my sports jacket down the street to a tailor, while they did the pants themselves. Sure enough, it was ready at six o'clock as promised. That suit lasted me for thirty years. To this day, it remains one of my favorites. Every time I wore it, it brought back many wonderful memories of that special year in Flin Flon.

OBITUARY - EX-REGINA PAT - GEORGE MERVYN KNIPELBERG - (PLAYER - 1959-63)


KNIPELBERG, George - On August 8, 2007 George Mervyn Knipelberg passed away peacefully in the Palliative Care Ward (Pasqua Hospital) at the age of 66 years after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Predeceased by his parents, George and Kathleen; two infant siblings, Leonard and Joan; sister, Gloria (Earl) Muir.

George is survived by his children, Gord, Wendy (Darann) Sauer and their son Jacob, Ken (Kuniko); the mother of his children, Judy; special companion, Nancy Crossman; her daughter Samantha English (Terry Gillies) and daughter Allyson English; his brother Ken (Marie); as well as nieces and nephews. George was born in Weyburn, SK and graduated from Weyburn Collegiate Institute in 1959. He was a highly skilled hockey player who served as captain of the Regina Pats in 1961 and went on to play semi-pro hockey in the US in the early 60's. He joined Carling O'Keefe breweries (now Molsons) in 1964 where he held various positions including Provincial Sales Manager until retiring in 1991. During his tenure at Carling's, he attained his RIA designation graduating at the top of his class. In George's spare time, he enjoyed travel, spending time at the family cottage, and affiliations with clubs such as the Shriners and Masons. Through these activities, he made many wonderful friends for which he was extremely grateful for. Throughout George's long battle with cancer, he always made an effort to see things in a positive light and focused his attention on others. He was a truly remarkable person who will be missed by all those whose lives he touched. A very special thank you to all of the doctors, nurses, and staff at the Pasqua and Regina General hospitals for making the tough days a little easier to bear through your warm care and friendship.

OBITUARY - BOB TURNER - (PLAYER-COACH)


TURNER - Robert "Bob " - passed away on Monday February 7, 2005 in Regina. He was predeceased by his mother Susan Turner (nee Weselak), sisters Dorothy and Irene, and brother Len. Left to cherish Bob's memory is his wife Betty (Regina), son Ken and wife Cathy (Saskatoon), son Jim and wife Beth (Regina), grandchildren Madie and Lexie, his sisters Jean Lutzer and husband Albert, Joan Goudy and husband George, and Pat Salter, brothers-in-law: Dunc and Doreen Fisher, Bill and Betty Stimpson, Abe Block, Gord Grant and many nieces and nephews. Dad's hockey career has been well documented. What has not been said is what a great husband and father he was.


We would like to thank all the doctors and nurses at Regina General Hospital for all the great care Dad received over the past three years. He knew many of you by your first name and appreciated all that you did for him. A MEMORIAL SERVICE to Celebrate Bob's Life will be held at Regina Funeral Home, Hwy #1 E. Regina, SK on Friday February 11, 2005 at 2:00 p.m. A visitation for family and friends will be held at Regina Funeral Home on Thursday February 10, 2005 from 7:30 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 26 McCaul Crescent, Regina, SK S4R 3X1 or Hospitals of Regina Foundation, Cardiosciences, 225, 1874 Scarth Street, PO Box 1697, Regina, SK S4P 3Z6. Friends and family are invited to sign a book of condolences at www.obituariestoday.com. Arrangements are entrusted to Regina Funeral Home (306-789-8850).

OBITUARY - EX-REGINA PATS - JOHN INGLIS (PLAYER: GOALIE - 1933-34)

Published: 2007-11-19


INGLIS, John - On Thursday, November 15, 2007 John, of Regina, passed away at the age of 93. John is survived by his wife, Roma, who celebrated their 70th Anniversary last month; sons, Bill and Jim (Carolyn); grandchildren, Amanda (Rob) Casper, and Matthew; sister, Vye. John who was a quiet and caring person was raised in Lumsden. He played hockey for the Regina Pats, Regina Aces and New York Rovers in the 1930's. John served in the Navy in the 1940's, and after the war he joined Yarnton Decorating as a partner until retirement. John was a member of the Regina Rotary Club and The Callie Curling Club for many years. At the request of John and his family, there will be a private graveside service at Riverside Memorial Park. Flowers gratefully declined. Friends so wishing may make a donations, in memoriam, to a charity of choice. An online book of condolences may be signed at www.speersfuneralchapel.com

ERNIE PAPPAS DEATH - PATS PRESIDENT 1931

Ernie was the son of Nick Pappas, Regina Pats President in 1931, and also on Pats Executive in the 1930's .

When Ernie's father passed away, in honour of his father, Ernie presented the Nick Pappas Memorial Trophy to the Regina Pats for the Rookie of the Year for the first time in the 1966-67 season. The first winner was Ron "Garby" Garwasiuk. Ernie was faithful in having the trophy presented each year thereafter. In the 1990's he had his young son, Nick, beside him at the presentations.

A victim of Cancer, Ernie passed away on Friday, July 17, 2009, at the age of 70.

For a full obituary of Ernie Pappas go to the following: -


It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Ernie Pappas on Friday, July 17th at the age of 70 years. However, the sentiment being felt equally strong is one of pride, awe, joy and the utmost gratitude that we were able to have him brightening our lives as long as we did. It would be an injustice to say that Ernie died from cancer. Ernie LIVED with cancer and did so with courage, optimism, acceptance, and most of all, his unmatched sense of humour. Ernie was born on August 14th, 1938, son of Nick and Helen Pappas, both late of Regina. Ernie was predeceased by his wonderful wife, Aline Pappas (nee Burns) in 1988. He leaves to mourn and celebrate his life, his loving wife, Gloria Decorby-Pappas; his two adoring children, Nick and Myka Pappas Beckers (John Beckers); and his special sister, Angie Geatros (Tim and Judi, Greg and Karen, and Ted). Ernie also leaves to mourn, his honourary siblings in the Burns family, special nieces and nephews, cousins, aunts, Gloria's children (Greg, Michelle and Doug) and countless friends that were very dear to him. After obtaining his Bachelor of Arts/Education degree from the University of Saskatchewan and Ohio State, Ernie started his teaching and guidance counselling career in Regina in 1967 at Central Collegiate where he remained until the school closed in 1985. From 1985-1994, he was the guidance counsellor at F.W. Johnson Collegiate. During his long career as an educator and guidance counsellor, he touched the lives of countless students. In recognition of his contribution to the Regina Public School system, Ernie was thrilled to recently learn that the Guidance Resource Centre at F.W. Johnson Collegiate will officially be named in his honour this fall. Upon his retirement in 1994, Ernie successfully ran for the Regina Public School Board, and remained on the Board for 12 years. Ernie served much of that period as either the Vice Chair or Chair of the Board, and very much enjoyed his rich experience with public life. Ernie was also the proud author of a University Student Survival Guide that sold many copies across Canada. Ernie's greatest pleasure in life was in telling jokes and making people laugh. It seemed that almost every conversation would start with, "I've got a new joke for you". He was also a master story teller and bridge player. He loved traveling and spending time with family and his friends. He touched many lives and will be greatly missed. A celebration of Ernie's life will take place on Wednesday, July 22nd at 7:00 PM at F.W. Johnson Collegiate - 400 Fines Drive. In lieu of flowers, those so wishing can make a donation to the Palliative Care Unit at the Pasqua Hospital (4101 Dewdney Avenue - Regina, SK - S4T 1A5) or the Multiple Sclerosis Society (150 Albert Street - Regina, SK - S4R 2N2). Our family would like to express our heartfelt gratitude for the loving care that Ernie (and all of us) received from Dr. Moolla and everyone in the Pasqua Hospital's Palliative Care Unit. You are all very special people. An online book of condolences may be signed at www.speersfuneralchapel.com - See more at: http://speersfuneralchapel.com/tribute/details/1698/Ernie_Pappas/obituary.html#sthash.fn9bRBvx.dpuf

OBITUARY - EX-REGINA PATS PART TIME OWNER HARRY "HUDDY" BELL - (1980'S)


HARRY "HUDDY" BOTLEY BELL - REGINA PATS PART TIME OWNER OF THE 1980'S PASSED AWAY LAST NIGHT IN SCOTTSDALE, ARIZONA, AT THE AGE OF 83.


By: Ron C. Johnston

Harry "Huddy" BELL was born 31 October 1925, at Regina, Saskatchewan. Huddy was one of the five new owners of the 1985-1986 Regina Pats. He was one of the first defenseman credited with using the slap shot. He and his brothers were involved in apartment construction and ownership of the Bell City Motel (which became the Sandman Inn). (Photos: Harry - New York Rovers - and Regina Pats Program 1985 - Ron C. Johnston - Collection)

Harry started his hockey with the Regina Commandos (SJHL) in 1943-1944 and played in the Memorial Cup that year. The following year had Military Service. Played with the New York Rovers (EAHL) 1945-46. The next year 1946-47 played with New Haven Ramblers (AHL), plus 1 game with the New York Rangers (NHL). Next played with St. Paul Saints (USHL) in 1948 to 1950, Tacoma Rockets (PCHL) 1950-51 season. Bakc with the New York Rovers (EAHL) 1951-1952 and finished his hockey career with the Regina Caps (SSHL) from 1952 to 1954. Was selected on the (SSHL) 1952-53 All-Star Team. A complete obituary will be published Wednesday, September 2, 2009.

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From my cousin - Will Klein, Scottsdale, Arizona ,

at 12:04 p.m. - Regina Pats Part Owner - 1979-1983

Received an e-mail from him - 12:10 p.m. this date:

Yes, I did know Huddy, as a matter of fact the home we have lived in for the past 21 years we purchased from Huddy.

I was not a personal friend of his but knew him socially. He had a very interesting background and his life would make a great movie, talk about rags to riches. At one time he was probably the largest private land holder/trader in Arizona (would have to be confirmed).

His brother Dick Bell (a paraplegic became an excellent golfer)

He was an excellent athlete in his younger days, played in the NY Rangers chain for the NY Rovers when he was a teen ager. I believe credit is given to Boom Boom Geofrion for inventing the slap shot but I have heard it attributed to Huddy Bell on many occasions.

He became a low handicap golfer. He came to Arizona to help overcome severe arthritis, I heard he was actually taken off a flight from Canada to Phoenix on a stretcher in the ‘60s (he came here because of the very dry temperatures) and the relocation worked miracles for him.

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e-mail from Orville Off, Ex-Regina Pat - 12:37 p.m.

Apparently Huddy was in Regina a few days ago and was staying at Hotel Saskatchewan and the story is that he fell and hurt his head. He had a hip replacement in Scottsdale a short time ago, I don't know if that was the cause of the fall. He went to the hospital in Regina and had a scan that didn't show any damage. He then flew back to Scottsdale and suffered a blood clot in the brain and apparently died a few hours later. I understand the funeral will be in Regina next Wednesday.

********************************

Taken from the Regina Leader Post - at 11:30 a.m.

- By Samantha Maciag -

- http://www.leaderpost.com/new/Former+Regina+Pats+owner+Harry+Bell+1939751/story.html -

REGINA — Harry "Huddy" Bell, a prominent Regina businessman for the last several decades, died Thursday night in Phoenix, Arizona, at 83.

Born Oct. 31, 1925, he served in the Canadian Army from 1943 to 1945 during the Second World War.

In 1945, Bell was scouted and signed by the New York Rangers as a free agent, playing just one NHL game as a defenceman against the Chicago Blackhawks in March of 1947.

He played 374 minor league games with the New York Rovers (EHL), New Haven (AHL), St. Paul (USHL) and Tacoma (PCHL) between 1945 and 1951. He retired from pro hockey in 1952.
Bell was one of the quintet of business owners — including Ted Knight, Jack Nicolle, Morley Gusway and Bill Hicke — that purchased the Regina Pats in February of 1986.

Up-date - Story:

- http://www.leaderpost.com/sports/hockey/pats-hockey/Former+Regina+Pats+owner+Herbert+Huddy+Bell+dies/1939751/story.html -

EX-REGINA PATS - TODD DAVISON - 1986-2006 - DIED OF CANCER

Todd played the game of hockey with tremendous speed and a big

heart, never letting size limit his ability to compete. A feisty forward in the Western Hockey League, he played with the Regina Pats Hockey Team during the 2002-2003 season. Todd, with his family by his side, peacefully passed away on Sunday, December 2, 2006.

Photo: (Regina Pats - 2002-2003) - Kevin Shaw Collection

He was born in Winnipeg on September 30, 1986, and attended St. Alphonsus for his early education and graduated from St. Paul's High School in 2004. He had been enrolled at the University of Manitoba.

At the age of 12, Todd went to Denmark with the North American Selects All Star Team. He played AAA hockey as an age-advanced player and had some wonderful coaches who helped him develop his skills. By 13 he was named the Most Valuable Player in the league.

By age 14 Todd was drafted by the Regina Pats organization of the WHL. At 15 he played for the AAA Sharks of the Manitoba Provincial Midget Hockey League and was named to the First Team All Stars at the Western Canada Regional Championship. At 16 he didn't expect to make the Regina Pats but his skill, focus, and hard work earned him a spot on the team, playing Centre alongside his brother Wade, a Right Winger. Todd Davison always had a way of defying the odds. Known to his teammates as Itty Bitty — a nickname befitting his underdog stature — the scrappy 5-foot-6 forward earned a permanent place in the hearts of the Regina Pats during the 2002-03 season. That same year he played on Team Manitoba at the Canada Winter Games and was named Assistant Captain. (Photo: Brother Wade Davison) In the fall of 2003, his path led him to play with the Lloydminster Blazers of the Alberta Junior Hockey League.

Todd wasn't the biggest guy out there on the ice but his passion for the game, his hockey smarts, skill, and feistiness had everyone cheering him on. After his second season of junior hockey, in June 2004, two days after graduation from high school, his career had to be put aside to battle his biggest opponent yet, Synovial Sarcoma, a rare form of Cancer. He spent the next several months having surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation treatments so that he could fight the Cancer and return to hockey. In February of 2005, Todd finished his last treatments in Toronto, flew home to Winnipeg, and was immediately off to Alberta to play his first game back with ....... Photo: - http://www.jerseychair.com/ - ...............................

the Blazers. He scored two goals in that game. His season did not last long as Todd needed major surgery on his shoulder. He played his last game for the Blazers in Fort McMurray, Alberta, on February 23, 2005. Todd spent the next winter having more treatments that were scheduled around the two hockey teams he helped coach.

(Taken from - jerseychair.com - Todd had health-coverage personally, but it did not cover travel expenses for his family to be at his side. We decided to make a chair out of his game worn jersey as a prize for this special fund raiser. The chair was a great hit and raised $2900 for the cause, but the best part was seeing the gentleman who won the chair present it back to Todd).

Todd continued to battle his Cancer with chemotherapy and another major surgery, this time to his lungs, in May 2006. Todd was deeply inspired by Lance Armstrong, believing that everyone was capable of making a difference in the world and able to make the world a better place for someone else. Todd had a vision. The 'Believe in the Goal' organization was formed and the Sizzlin' Summer Showdown was held in August 2006. Todd's hockey friends came together to play hockey in support of the NeverAlone Foundation and CancerCare Manitoba. Players from the NHL, AHL and the Canadian National Junior Hockey Team wowed the sold out crowd at the Selkirk Arena. It was an incredible evening that raised $50,000.00 thanks to the support of generous sponsors and fans.

OBITUARY - Leonard Lawrence RAE - REGINA PATS (1929-1930)

Published: 2007-10-01


RAE - Leonard Lawrence Rae: of Regina passed away peacefully on Friday, September 28, 2007. Predeceased by his wife, Dorothy, his daughter Karen, and his granddaughter Sherry Rae Idema. He is survived by his daughter Tracy (Trevor) Johnston, his son-in-law Andy Idema, and five grandchildren; Jamie Johnston, Christy (John) Ross, Morgan (Lisa) Johnston, Laurie (Derek) Wood, Chad (Vanessa) Idema; and seven great-grandchildren: Zade Nadon, Cambree, Capriann and Nathaniel Ross, Lhea Rae Johnston, Kaden Wood and Gage Idema.

Len was a remarkable and gentle man. He was born in Wapella, Saskatchewan, December 25, 1910, and lived and worked all of his life in Saskatchewan. He worked until the age of 65 at Canada Permanent, and then went on to work for Settler's Savings and Mortgage and Rice Hamac until he was almost 90. He had a true passion for sports, and had the honour of playing for the Regina Pats hockey team when they won the Memorial Cup in 1930. He still supported the Regina Roughrider Football team by continuing to buy his season ticket which he had held since 1929. However, his true devotion was to his wife Dorothy, and to his daughters, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. His random acts of kindness always seemed to come just when they were most needed. He was always there, behind the scenes, quietly helping to meet his family's needs. The presence of this kind, good man will always be felt profoundly by those of us who loved him. The family wishes to thank the caregivers at Precious Memories Care Home for their commitment, compassion, and gentle loving care to "Grandpa Len " for the past three and a half years. Thanks also to Neale Elder Support Service, especially to Deenie Wyatt, Len's companion on his outing to Tim Horton's.

At Len's request there will be no funeral service. A private graveside service for immediate family only will take place at Riverside Memorial Park. Flowers gratefully declined. Friends so wishing please visit a shut-in, elderly relative of friend.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

ALVIN "THE SILVER FOX" HORACE RITCHIE - STORY


The following is taken from the Regina Leader Post, April 28, 1956: Al “Silver Fox” Ritchie was born on December 12, 1890, at Cobden, Ontario. He was taken to midland where he got his public, high school and hockey education.

Fascinated with stories of the wild west, he came to Regina in 1910 and got into the construction business with Patsons Construction and Engineering at which time he helped build the Albert and Broad Street subways. Later he helped form Ritchie and McDowough Construction which built four bridges for the Provincial Highway Department.

Al played baseball in those early years with the Metropolitan team in a Local four-team league before the First World War.

During the First World War, he took an officer’s course and joined the infantry. (Photo: Sask. Sports Hall of Fame)

He was transferred to the artillery and served in France. After the war he was discharged, joined the customs service in Regina, and later became the custom and excise appraiser for 37 years.
He was the manager and coach of the Vics Senior Hockey Team in 1921 when they won the Western Canada Championship in 1921 and 1922. Al was named coach of the Regina Pats Junior Hockey Team in the 1923-24 season and organized the Pats Junior Football team in 1925, winning the Western Championship for the next fours years and the Canadian Championship in 1928.

He was the only man in history to have won national championship in both.

Al Ritchie Coached the Regina Roughriders and headed east for the Grey Cup in 1928, 1930, 1931 and 1932. He ended his official football career in 1935. Later he became scout for the New York Rangers and helped the Junior Flin Flon Bombers and Lethbridge teams to join the Rangers farm system.

Al was named to the “Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame” in 1964 and the Saskatchewan Hall of Fame October 31, 1966. He was better known as “The Silver Fox” and died at the age of 75 in Regina on Monday, February 21, 1966.

He was the manager and coach of the Vics Senior Hockey Team in 1921 when they won the Western Canada Championship in 1921 and 1922. Al was named coach of the Regina Pats Junior Hockey Team in the 1923-24 season and organized the Pats Junior Football team in 1925, winning the Western Championship for the next fours years and the Canadian Championship in 1928.

He was the only man in history to have won national championship in both.

Al Ritchie Coached the Regina Roughriders and headed east for the Grey Cup in 1928, 1930, 1931, and 1932. He ended his official football career in 1935. Later he became scout for the New York Rangers and helped the Junior Flin Flon Bombers and Lethbridge teams to join the Rangers farm system.

Al was named to the “Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame” in 1964 and the Saskatchewan Hall of Fame October 31, 1966. He was better known as “The Silver Fox” and died at the age of 75 in Regina on Monday, February 21, 1966.

************************************************************

Al Ritchie has to be one of the top three coaches for the Regina Pats. The second coach, Murray Armstrong, 1947 to 1955, (Murray played three years under coach Al Richie, 1931-32 to 1933-34). The third coach, Bob Turner, 1965 to 1976. Two years during 1969-1970 and 1971-1972, Bob left the team to do some scouting for National Hockey Leauge teams. Bob Turner played three years under coach Murray Armstrong, 1951-1952 to 1953-1954.

A neighbourhood in east Regina was named after him.  In the same area is a Rink, Community Centre, Core Neighbourhood Centre, and a Health Action Centre Store. Also a Crescent, in the North-West section of the city is named after him.

 Ritchie Neighbourhood - 14th. Ave. East and West of Park St.

 Al Ritchie Arena - 2230 Lindsay St.

Al Ritchie Community Association and Family Wellness Project - 2250 Lindsay St.

Al Ritchie Core Neighbourhood Centre - 445, 14th. Avenue
 
Al Ritchie Health Action Centre - 325 Victoria Avenue

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

MURRAY "THE CHIEF" ARMSTRONG

By: Ron "Scoreboard" Johnston

The son of the local blacksmith, Murray Armstrong was born on New Year's Day, 1916 in Manor, Saskatchewan.

Wil Klein: “I remember Murray Armstrong very well, having spent a good deal of my teenage years shooting pool at the National Billiards on the 1800 block Scarth Street in Regina.”

Murray Armstrong: “It was owned by Jack Farquarson and he sold me half interest in it.”

He and Farquarson, along with Eddie Litzenberger, were awesome pool players as was another senior guy named Joe Young who lost 2 or 3 fingers on one hand but was almost unbeatable at skittles pool. (Photo: by permission of the Denver University)

“The National was the hangout for all local sports teams, visiting hockey teams at junior and senior levels along with visiting CFL teams. That was the place Murray could keep his eyes on the young Pats” stated Wil Klein.

In 1957, after nine successful years at the helm, Coach Murray Armstrong left the Regina Pats for a coaching job at Denver University. He took with him a number of Pat players including John Hudson, Orville Off (team captain for one or two seasons), and Bill “Red” Hay, among others. They build a dynasty in the U.S.A. collegiate hockey circles which is in place to this day.

In a phone interview Murray Armstrong said, '"I am almost blind, I can not see very well, My wife and I golfed since we were married, which will be 68 years on the 21st of March, 2010. I met my wife, Freda, when I was playing professional hockey in the International-American Hockey League with the Syracus Stars during the 1936-37 season." As he said, "That's a long way from Semans, Saskatchewan, its about 130 kilometres north of Regina, neart the village of Manor where I was born. I grew up in Semans." Murray went onto say, "In 1928, I made a vow to myself, that I am not going to smoke and I am not going to drink and I am going to be a National Hockey League player and I was lucky enough that it worked out pretty nice. (Photo: by permission of the Denver University)

“My 21 years coaching career was great at the U of Denver and I had many good boys from Saskatchewan and the Pats. We went to the U.S. Championships Finals 11 times and won 5 Championships. In those 21 years the team won 463, lost 215, and tied 31 games. When I went to Denver University I told the Athletic Director, Mr. E. Wieman, 'I'll give you a National Championship in three years or I will resgin.' I got the National Championship in the second year. I turned down a chance from Muzz Patrick to coach the New York Rangers. I was happy in Denver.”

Will Klein: “Other major universities who were keen on hockey were North Dakota, Fargo-Moorhead, Minnesota, Wisconsin, along with Michigan (coach by a great ex-Pat, Red Berenson) and northeastern colleges followed suit because their teams, manned by U.S. Kids, could not keep up. That, of course, has changed over the years. To this day, Armstrong is considered the guru of them all.” Murray stated, “I grew up in the small town of Semans, Saskatchewan. My father was a blacksmith. They had a closed-in rink. I can remember playing there till I was 12, then we moved to Regina. I started playing in organized hockey.” At 16, he was playing for the Regina Pats under Al Ritchie.

Under Armstrong, the Regina Pats never finished worse than third place. He mastermined the Pat Hockey Club to the Memorial Cup Final in 1949-50, 1951-52, 1954-55 and 1955-56, as well as the Abbot Cup Finalists in 1950-51. Murray played for the Regina Pats 1931-32 to 1934-35 when the club folded.

"When I was 19, I went to the New York Rovers, the farm team of the New York Rangers, with a whole bunch of fellows from Winnipeg, where we had our training camp", said Murray. "I played there with two Patrick boys (Lester and Frank), After that, I was drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs and belonged to them for three years. I didn't play with them very much with them, but I did play with the Syracuse Stars, the farm team. I played most of the three years I was with them. The last year I stood second or third in the league in scoring, and they never took up for the play-offs. I told them if they didn't get rid of me to a National League team, I was going to retire.That year the National Hockey League decided to put another team in New York, the New York Americans. I played with them in 1939-40. I stood eight in the league in scoring. I did not make much money, $3,000."

In 1942, after three years with the New York Americans, I joined the Canadian army. There was an army hockey team in Regina. I was the play/coach for one year. I went out and got my officer's training and came back. After having an operation on my back in 1941, I had to go to the Mayo Clinic (in Rochester, Minnesota). In 1943, I was released, one year after Freda and I got married in 1942, and I went to the Detroit Red Wings. Played there that year and the next two years.

I would come to Regina in the summertime. After playing for Detroit, I came home in the summer and ran a pool hall part-time. I also sold men's clothing in the province of Saskatchewan for about six years. I then started coaching. After three years with Detroit, I went to Buffalo. We were playing in the minor league, when the coach told me that they have a team in Dallas, Texas that is in the bottom of their section. Would you be good enough to go there to play and coach them for a year?" 'Sure," I said. I took that team from the bottom and we led our section. We lost in the final play-offs. I then stayed in Regina after that and coached the Pats for eight years.

He then went on and played with the New York Americans 1939 to 1942, the Detroit Red Wings form 1943 to 1946 and then became a journeyman. In 1974 Armstrong was inducted into the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame, received the 1976 Denver U.S.A. Citizen by Choice Award and the Lester Patrick Trophy in New York in 1977. In his honor, Denver University commissioned a life-size bronze statue of Armstrong. The sculpture was done by former Pioneers player Steve Landis. (Photo: by permission of the Denver University)

He was inducted into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame on March 21, 1981.

As of the year 2010, Murray (94), and his wife Freda (97), are living in Venice, Florida, with the back of their house looking onto the golf course. I was talking to Murray at the end of the January, 2010 he mentioned, I go golfing with three of my friends once a week. Freda has autheritis and is not able to get around like she use to".

THE BOOK IS NOW ON SALE AS OF: NOVEMBER 2, 2009 - PAPER COVER: $39.95 at ALL REGINA COSTCO, WAL*MART, AND MAJOR BOOK STORES. - ALSO AT REGINA PATS BOOK STORE (NEUTRAL ZONE) FOR REGINA OR OUT OF TOWN ORDERS. HARD COVER ONLY: $49.95 - FROM CENTRAX BOOKS - ORDER FORM: SEE BELOW -


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REGINA PAT TEAM PICTURE REUNION - 1986-87 MEMORIAL CUP - 1973-74



(Photo: Dennis Sobchuk - Collection)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

REGINA PATS ALUMNI - BILL LeCAINE -


Bill LeCaine (RW/C) - 1955-57

I was born on the Lakota Sioux Wood Mountain reserve in Saskatchewan, Canada, in 1938. I am a distant relative of Sitting Bull and direct descendant of Chief Black Moon who fought with Sitting Bull at the battle of the "Little Big Horn". From there, to escape the army, Sitting Bull's tribe, along with his Chief Black Moon, fled to Canada and Wood Mountain, Saskatchewan.

My mother took me off the reserve at about age 4-5. From there I went to live with her on skidrow in Moose Jaw. After living on the street, the government took me away from my mother and I went to live in a children's shelter where I met two sisters that I had not met. The Government eventually closed the shelter and my sisters went one way and I the other. They moved me to Regina, Saskatchewan, where I eventually lived in various foster homes. I was never adopted.

I was signed to the Montreal Canadiens to a C form at the age of 12, which meant I was their property for life.

I played with the Regina Pats Junior Hockey Team from 1955-56 to 1957-58 season. I had the honor of playing in two Memorial Cups. In my rookie season, I only played one league game, scoring a goal and had one assist. The same season we won the Duluth International Juvenile Tournament defeating the host All-Stars 3-2. Coach Del Wilson and Manager Mike Kartusch took the whole team to Port Arthur, while I took the place of the injured Jerry Walker in the Play-offs where I played 7 games. First with Port Arthur North Stars, then Toronto Marlboros in the Memorial Cup.

In the 1958 Memorial Cup we had to play St. Bonfiace Canadiens, another sponsored Montreal Canadien Team. The first three games were played in the east and the last three in Regina. We then headed east by train, picking up the Saunder Brothers on the way. We played another Montreal Canadiens sponsored team, the Hull-Ottawa Canadiens.

I have a little story to tell. Samie Pollick had a goalie that could not stop a wet paper bag, so they put him in a body cast in the hospital with a broken back. A true story. They brought in Bruce Campbell from the Lakehead, who was the best goaltender in Canada. Well, instead of winning the Memorial Cup with him, we lost. That year we should have won the Memorial.

I got a scholarship with North Dakota University. From there I played in the International Hockey League from 1959-60 to 1966-67 with Denver, Minneapolis and Port Huron.

The following season I played with Balitmore Clippers in the American Hockey League. In 1968-69 I had a stint with the Pittsburgh Penguins of the National Hockey League and played 4 games. Also played 51 games with Amarill0 Wranglers of the Central League. Then back to the International League with Port Huron from 1969-70 to 1974-75.

At the age of 72 Bill was in his 1st maraton on October 31, 2010 in Washington DC. There were 35,000 runners and I was running ro "Team Running Strong" to raise money for Native American children and families for the bare essentials in life, food, running water and shelter. Bill raised $3500 and his company has been supporting this cause for many years. Billy Mills a native American from the Rosebud Reservation won the 10,000 meter race and the gold metal for the USA in the 1964 Olympics was Bill's partner. On December 10th same year, another one his group is taking Christmas gifts to the Pine Ridge and Rosebud reservation in South Dakota. He said, "We focused on kids in the pas but the last couple of years we've beek taking warm clothes, like coats, mitts, etc. for the elders.

As a side note, my family and I were honored a year ago last October for being the first Native American from the University of North Dakota to play in the NHL. Also, a German publishing company just released a printed book in Germany about my Grandfather, whose name was our original name - John O'Kute Sica - which in English means, "hard to kill or hard to knock down". It is being release early this summer in Canada in English.

Bill is the President & CEO of the Arrow Technologies (A Native American Woman Owned Company) in Centennial, Colorado, U.S.A.

REGINA PATS ALUMNI - CPT. STEVEN STANLEY ABULET


Steven Stanley Albulet (RW) - 1930-32

Steve was born 11 November 1912 in Dysart, about forty miles north of Regina, Saskatchewan. When he was very young the family moved into Regina where his father had a coal and wood business. He attended Haultain public school and Central Collegiate in Regina. His parents felt that Steve should become a pharmacist like his older brother George. Initially he intended to do this, however, when he was about twelve, R.J. Groom, who had the number one commercial flying license in Canada, caused local excitement when he brought his Jenny, registration AAA, into town, and from then on they used to talk about airplanes a lot around the store. Steve was always thinking about airplanes and folks said he should learn to fly and when Lindbergh flew the Atlantic that convinced him.

In spite of the initial opposition of his parents, Steve Albulet decided that he wanted to be a professional pilot. Because no financial support was forthcoming from home, he earned the money for his training by working at drug stores after school and repairing cars on Saturdays.

Steve found he could use his motor mechanics training to make extra bucks. Men who came to the store would let him take their cars home for a grease and lube job which brought him four or five dollars. For this work he got ten dollars, which brought him a whole hour of flying. He soloed on a Cirrus Moth, and got his private license. In order to qualify for his commercial licence, Steve had to complete fifty additional hours of flying. Art Brazier, the mechanic at the Regina Flying Club, suggested that he and Steve build their own aircraft in order to reduce their flying costs.
Although Art was not interested in getting his commercial licence, he was also a flying enthusiast. They chose to build a small, high-winged monoplane called the Heath Parasol. Steve secretly cashed in his life insurance policy, which was worth $200, to purchase a thirty horsepower engine to power the aircraft.

One day, when it was not completely finished, he pushed it out of the hangar, ran it down the field, and got airborne. He quickly closed the throttle and landed - but he was thrilled. It flew, and he had made it himself. Art and Steve Heath's plane was called the Pilsner Pup. The Pilsner brewing company supplied one case of free beer a week to the hangar staff of the Regina Flying Club and requested this endorsement in return. Although Steve didn’t drink, he felt obliged to co-operate. The first long flight that Steve made in this aircraft was to an air meet at Glasgow, Montana.

Steve was now able to build up his time by barnstorming. For a fee of $2.00 per person, he would fly two passengers up to a height of 1,000 feet and do a stall turn, which was exciting for the passengers, and then land. In 1935, when he had nearly enough for a commercial, Steve was offered a job by Karels Air Service of Regina. He accepted this position which consisted primarily of servicing the mining industry in the northern part of the Prairie Provinces. Steve had a crash course in flying an aircraft with floats before beginning this work. He flew Karels new Gypsy Moth to Cooking Lake near Edmonton, had floats installed, and taught himself to fly using floats by taking off and landing twice. He had a total of about seventy-five hours when he landed in Edmonton. He then flew to Fort McMurray using a hand-drawn map and landed on the river at that location after dark.

They wanted him to go to Winnipeg, pick up a Gypsy Moth they had purchased, and bring it to Regina. This flying time would qualify him for his commercial license and he already had an air engineer’s ticket. He was to take the machine to Goldfields where there was a lot of mining activity and fly prospectors.

Steve states that on one occasion while he was working for Karels, he was told to fly a sheriff from Humbolt, Saskatchewan, to several locations north of that community. Just after he landed at the first location, the sheriff handed him a pistol and said, "If they come after me, just fire a few shots in the air". In 1936 he was employed by Arrow Airways of The Pas, Manitoba. He flew a single-engine Fokker monoplane and a Waco aircraft for this company and his work consisted primarily of flying trappers in and out of their hunting grounds; flying their furs out in the spring, transporting mining equipment, supplies, and crews, and occasionally delivering mail to isolated communities.

Steve also completed four of his five mercy flights during this period of time. An account of one of these flights follows: In 1937 two men were severely injured trying to raise a caterpillar tractor which had fallen through the ice on a lake north of Flin Flon, Manitoba. Steve had to fly in and out of the area at night using a flashlight to read his instruments; his Fokker wasn’t equipped for night flying. The men at the site of the accident lit a large signal fire on the lake to help guide me in. After he landed, they strapped the two men onto large planks and then pushed them into the cargo bay. Both men made excellent recoveries.

In the same year the New York Times, via Canadian Press, reported that Steve Albulet was fined $2.00 and costs in police court for obstructing traffic by parking his plane outside his suburban home. He tied the plane, engine running, to a tree with part of the plane across the sidewalk. Steve notes that this report is not completely accurate and is somewhat misleading. It sounds like he landed on the street in front of his house. Actually, he was running-in the engine on a Monocoupe after its wing had been removed at the Regina airport and it had been towed to Regina Auto Body. The aircraft wasn't tied up outside his home. It was tied up at Regina Auto Body. The rest of the story is true.

In the fall he flew south. The water was very low at Ft. McMurray and he damaged a float in landing. So he put wheels on the machine and left for Edmonton, using the main street of Ft. McMurray as a runway. Steve thinks he is the only pilot who has done that.

From Edmonton he returned to Regina. Soon he was hired to fly a single engine Fokker by Arrow Airways, a branch of Canadian Airways that worked out of The Pas. He was based at Sherridon, Manitoba. He was both pilot and mechanic and he did a lot of flying out of Sherridon. Mostly he served trappers and when he was not busy doing that, his Company would move him down to The Pas to do mail runs to a number of small communities.

On one occasion Steve flew a Winnipeg man named Jack Christie to a spot and was to pick him up on an arranged day. However, the day before he was due Steve was in the area and decided to advance the pick up date because a storm was coming in and the next day the weather would be bad. When he got there he found Christie lying in his sleeping bag in the open. He had not even set up his tent, a first task for anyone out in Canada's northlands.

Steve left Sherridon and Arrow Airways in April of 1939 to join Trans Canada Air Lines. He started in the airline as a First Officer but by September of 1939 he and Jack Crosby were teamed up for promotion. In March 1940 they were both promoted. In his first years as Captain Steve flew the prairies as far west as Lethbridge and, on occasion, Winnipeg east as far as Montreal. In 1944 he got a place on the CGTAS but before he could take a flight he was asked to return to Winnipeg to run the flying school. He used to spend his holidays flying in the bush for Lamb Airways and, in fact, this is how he started his son, Jeff, in the flying business.

In 1943, on his days off in Winnipeg, Steve would instruct for the Company. In one month he logged 175 hours. From 1944 until his retirement in 1969, Steve flew the Atlantic for T.C.A. and then Air Canada flying Avro Lancastrian, North Star, Lockheed Super Constellation, and Douglas DC-8 aircraft. He only had one orientation flight to Prestwick, Scotland, and back to Montreal before taking over as Captain.

An earlier aircraft Steve flew on trans-Atlantic operations occasionally developed engine problems. On one occasion, after attempting to land a North Star at Greenland where the field was fogged in, Steve eventually touched down at Goose Bay with two and a half engines running.
In 1947 Steve Albulet was involved in the first stage of the dramatic rescue of sixty-nine persons aboard a flying boat named the "Bermuda Queen" which had been forced down in mid-Atlantic. Before it landed on the ocean, he and the other members of a T.C.A. North Star crew located and then helped guide the flying boat to a U. S. Coastguard weather ship. The other members of the crew were George Lothian, Chief Pilot, Atlantic; Ken Frazer, Navigator; Ken Taman, Radio Officer; and Stewardess Mary ONeil. In his book entitled Flight Deck, George Lothian notes that Steve was Captain and flew the aircraft. As one would expect, the crew worked as a team during their part of this rescue. This incident received international press coverage and was front page news in Steves home-town Regina.

In Lancastrian days he had one westbound crossing that produced twenty-five and a half hours of flying time in one duty period. Their first stop was at the Azores and then on to Bermuda and finally Montreal, battling thunderstorms all the way. From 1944 until his retirement in 1969, Steve flew the Atlantic, retiring with 1,498 crossings.

In Montreal he was connected with a big overhaul shop whose owner was also the Cessna dealer. Steve used to deliver Cessna’s to Montreal from the factory for him, and has brought in 150 aircraft in his time. In 1965 he developed a fishing camp on Hudson Bay. He had a Cessna 206 and when he had time off after an Atlantic trip he would fly there and enjoy a few days in the bush. In the beginning it was just a fun thing, but then he got licensed as a carrier and started to bring fishing parties in.

Steve retired from Air Canada three years early so that he could help his wife, who was quite ill. He and Wilma married in 1940; she was a stewardess on the airline. They had three children, Jeff, who is an Air Canada Captain, Donna, who is married and Sue-Ann, who arrived ten years later and is also married. Wilma passed away in 1976.

Some years later he remarried, to Rhoda Yazinski. Vic Yazinski was also a bush pilot who was with TCA in the early days but had since left. For a while, after his retirement, the fishing camp kept him busy, it developing into quite a business using two aircraft for transportation, his 206 and a Cessna 185. But when the James Bay power development was complete he said to heck with it, left everything, sold his house in Montreal and he and Rhoda moved to the west coast.
Son Jeff was then involved in a small floatplane air service that docked in the Fraser River near New Westminster and wanted his Dad to come in with him and his partner. Steve did for a while. In a few years they sold out Steve continued to fly his own airplane however, using it for fishing trips and taking it south to California every winter. Steve Albulet has a lot of flying time. During his lifetime, he logged over 42,000 hours of flying time in fifty-seven different types of aircraft and made nearly 1,500 transatlantic crossings.

Today the Albulets live in Burnaby, convenient to everything they need. In the winters they go to Hemet in California, a place in the desert near the San Jacinto Valley. They have a trailer with two push outs and everything in it. He helps some friends with a couple of airplanes, doing maintenance work. What does Rhoda do? He says she goes to exercise class every morning, which is a pretty typical response from a married man whose major interest, all his life, has been airplanes.

Steve passed away peacefully June 6th, 2006 in his 94th year in Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

REGINA PATS - HARD COVER BOOK FORM -



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REGINA PATS GRADS WHO PLAYED IN THE NHL - 2005-06 to PRESENT

Petr Kalus - RW - Played just one season with the Pats after playing in the Czech Republic ... scored 36 goals, 22 assists in 60 games in 2005-06 WHL season and added four goals, one assist in six playoff games ... born in 1987 in Ostrava, Czedh Republic ... drafted 29th overall by Boston Bruins in 2005 NHL draft ... traded to Minnesota Wild in 2007 ... played for Balshikha MVD HC in the KHL in 2008-09 ... Played for Minnesota 2009-10 and in the American Hockey League .... Playing with Slavia Praha HC in the Czech League during the 2011-12 season ... Had four goals and one assist in nine NHL games.





Denis Tolpeko - LW - Played two seasons for Seattle Thunderbirds before being traded to the Pats ... played 2005-06 for the Pats, scored 20 goals, had 31 assists in 53 games, added four assists in six playoff games ... born 1985 in Moscow ... signed as a free agent by the NHL Philadelphia Flyers in 2006 ... played for Moscow Dynamo in the KHL in 2008-09 until 2011-12 ... had one goal and five assist in 26 NHL games.











Jordan Eberle - C - Had four seasons with the Pats 2006-10, had 155 goals and 155 assists for 310 points in 254 games ... Drafted 22nd in the first round of the 2008 NHL draft by the Edmonton Oilers ... Born May 15, 1900 in Regina, Saskatchewan ...played in 2 world junior championships, getting gold in 2009 and silver in 2010 ... First Team-All-Star East Division in the Western Junior Hockey League in 2009 and 2010 ... Canadian Junior Hockey League Scholastic Player of the Year in 2008 and Player of the Year in 2010 ... Playing with the Edmonton Oilers from 2010-12, to date has 42 goals, 55 assists in 118 games.




Colton Teubert - D - Born March 8, 1990 ... Played with the Pats 2005-06 to 2009-10 ... played in 263 games, 32 goals, 81 assists and had 493 penalty minutes, also played in 22 playoff
games .... Played in two world junior championships, gold in 2009 and silver in 2010 ... Drafted 13th in the first round of the 2008 NHL Draft by Los Angeles Kings .... in the minors from 2008 to 2011 .... Traded to the Edmonton Oilers on February 28, 2011 .... Has played 20 games with Edmonton during the 2011-12 season, getting one assist.

REGINA PAT GRAD WHO PLAYED IN THE NHL - 1995-96 to 2004-05



Lyle Calder (LW) - Gritty forward played with the Pats for parts of four seasons (1995-96 to 1998-99) and was dealt to Kamloops Blazers midway through 1998-99. He scored 76 goals, had 119 assists in 185 games with the Pats, plus added three goals, one assist in 18 play-off games. Helped Canada with the Silver Medal at the 1999 World Junior Championship. Born 1979 in Mannville, Alberta.
Drafted 130th overall by Chicago Black Hawks in 1997. Played in NHL's Young Stars game in 2001-02 as part of the all-star weekend. Traded to Philadelphia Flyers in 2006-07, but struggled and was dealt that season to Detroit Red Wings. Signed as a free agent by Los Angeles Kings in 2007 and played there in 2008-09. He had 114 goals, 178 assists in 576 games and two goals, one assist in 18 play-off games.


Derek Morris (D) - Played just two seasons with the Pats, but had 75 points in his second season. Scored 26 goals, 101 assists in 134 games between 1995 to 1997, also scored one goal, 133 assists in 21 play-off games. First-team WHL all-star in 1997. Born 1978 in Edmonton. Drafted 13th overall by Calgary Flames in 1996. After the 1996-97, he was assigned to the Calgary's (AHL) affiliate, the Saint John Flames for the final 7 games of the regular season, as well as 5 post-season games. Smooth transition to the NHL. Making all-rookie team with the Flames. Traded to Colorado Avalanche before the 2002-03 season, then dealt to Phoenix Coyotes early in 2003-04 campaign. Played in 2008-09 with New York Rangers, signed as free agent by Boston Bruins in 2009 and has 7 goals, 264 asists in 793 career NHL games, as well as five assists in 14 play-off games. Played for Canada at the World Championships in 1999, 2001 and 2004, winning the Gold Medal in 2004.

Brad William Stuart (D) - Strong, scoring defenceman who played two and one-half seasons for the Pats before being traded midway in the 1998-99 season to the Calgary Hitmen. Helped Hitmen to the memorial Cup, but did not win. Scored 37 goals, 100 assists in 161 games wit Pats, plus had 3 goals, 8 assists in 14 play-off games. Helped Canada win the Silver Medal at the 1999 World Junior Championship. Second-team WHL all-star in 1998. First-team WHL all-star in 1999, first-team CHL all-star in 199 and CHL defenceman-of-the-year in 1999. Born 1979 in Rocky Mountain House, Alberta. Drafted third overall by San Jose Sharks in 1998. Never played a game in the minor leagues. Traded to Boston Bruins in 2005, traded to Calgary Flames in 2007 and signed as a free agent by Los Angeles Kings in 2007. Traded near the end of 2007-08 to Detroit Red Wings and won a Stanley Cup with Detroit. Advance to the Stanley Cup Final with the Red Wings in 2008-09. Scored 61 goals, 183 assists and 398 penalty minutes in 646 NHL regular-season games, plus he had seven goals, 21 assists in 96 play-off games.

Kyle Freadrich (LW) - At six feet, seven inches and 250 pounds, was a force on the ice as an enforcer and was imposing without even dropping the gloves. Spent three seasons with the Pats from 1996-99, compiling 9 goals, 10 assists and 626 penalty minutes in 165 games, plus he had one assist and 33 penalty minutes in 13 play-off games. Born 1978 in Edmonton. Drafted 64th overall by Vancouver in 1997, but never played a game for the Canucks. Signed as a free agent by Tampa Bay lightning in 1999, then traded to New York Rangers in 2001. Missed the entire 2001-02 season after suffering a head injury at training camp. Retired in 2002 with one assist and 75 penalty minutes in 23 NHL games.



Dimitri Nabokov (C/RW/LW) - The slick scorer was drafted 19th overall by the Chicago Black Hawks in 1995 and sent to the Regina Pats to get used to the North American Hockey. Played just one season (1996-97) with the Pats. In that one season put up impressive numbers, scoring 39 goals, 56 assists in just 50 games, plus two goals, three assists in five play-off games. Only a part-time big league player, but put up decent numbers in the minors. Traded to New York Islanders in 1998. Returned to play in the Russian League in 2000-01. Played for AaiPa Lappeenranta in the KHL in 2008-09. Born 1977 in Novosibirsk, Russia. Scored one goal and had one assist in seven NHL games.





Brett Lysak (C) - Played for five season with the Regina Pats and put up great scoring totals. Scored 145 goals, had 189 assists in 331 WHL games, plus 16 goals, 8 assists in 27 play-off games. Played in the Memorial Cup in 2001 when Pats were hosts. Second-team WHL all-star in 1999. Named to the Memorial Cup all-star team in 2001. Drafted 49th overall by Carolina Hurricanes in 1999 but only played two games with the NHL team, registering no points. Left for Europe in 2005-06 and played two season in italy before playing in Denmark in 2008-09. Born in 1980 in St.Albert, Alberta.







Dan Focht (D) - The big defenceman played one and one-half seasons for Tri-City Americans before his trade to the Regina Pats in the 1996-97 season. He scored two goals, had two assists in 22 games with the Pats, plus two assists in five play-off games. Born 197 in Regina. Drafted 11th overall by Phoenix Coyotes in 1996. Played mainly in the minor leagues from 1996 until retirement after 2006. Traded to Pittsburgh Penguins in 2002-03 and signed as a free agent by Florida Panthers in 2005. Scored two goals, had six assists in 82 NHL games, plus one assist in one play-off game.







Barret Jackman (D) - A tough, stay-at-home defenceman who followed a great junior career with a solid NHL career. Played with the Regina Pats (1997-2001). He scored 28 goals, had 111 assists and 796 penalty minutes in 234 games, plus one goal, seven assists, 59 penalty minutes in 21 play-off games. Helped Canada win Bronze Medals in 2000 and 2001. Pats rookie-of-the-year and scholastic payer-of-the-year in 1997-98. Captain of Canada's under-18 team that won the Gold Medal at the World Championship. Pats defenceman of the year in 1998-99 and second-team WHL all-star in 2000. Captain of team that played in the 2001 Memorial Cup when Pats were host. Drafted 17th overall by St. Louis Blues in 1999. Born 1981 in Trail, B.C. named to the AHL all-rookie team in 2002. Cracked Blues line up in 2003 and was paired with star defenceman Al MacInnis. Named to NHL all-rookie team in 2003 and won Calder Memorial Trophy as NHL rookie-of-the-year beating out Detroit Red Wings Henrik Zetterberg and Columbus Blue Jackets Rick Nash. Played for Canada at the World Championship in 2006-07. Played for Blues in 2008-09. Has 17 goals, 79 assists in 319 NHL games, plus one assist in 12 play-off games.

Ronald Petrovicky (RW) - Born 1977 in Zilina, Slovakia, the wineg came to Nroth American in 1994 and played for the Tri-City Americans. Traded next season to Prince Geroge Cougars, then traded to Regina Pats before the 1997-98 season. Put up great numbers in only season with the Pats, scoring 64 goals, had 49 assists in 71 games, plus two goals, four assists in nine play-off games. Drafted 228th overall by Calgary Flames in 1996. Played for Slovakia at the 2000 World Junior Championship. Claimed by New York Rangers in 2002, then claimed by Atlanta Thrashers in 2003. Signed as a free agent by Pittsburgh Penguins in 2006, but missed most of 2006-07 season after a hip surgery. Played 2008-09 for Riga Dynamo in the Russia League (KHL). He scored 41 goals, 51 assist in 342 NHL games, and no points in three play-off games.



Dimitri Yakushin (D) - Played 1996-7 season and most of 1997-98 season with the Edmonton Ice before being traded to the Regina Pats. In 1997-98 only played 13 games with the Pats, getting 13 assists, plus adding two goals and eight assists in nine play-off games. Born 1978 in Kharkiv, Ukraine. Drafted 140th overall by Toronto Maple Leafs in 1996. Played mainly in the minors, going pointless in two games with the Leafs. Retired after the 2002-03 season.









Todd Fedoruk (LW) - Tough guy started his junior career with the Kelowna Rockets and was traded to the Regina Pats in 1997-98. Pats traded enforcer to Prince Albert Raiders in 1998-99. He scored 15 goals, had 15 assists and racked up 187 penalty minutes in 60 Regina Pat games, plus he had one goal and two assists in nine play-off games. Born 1979 in Redwater, Alberta. Drafted 164th overall by Philadelphia Flyers. Traded to Anaheim Mighty Ducks in 2005, then back to the Flyers in 2006. Signed as a free agent by Dallas Stars in 2007, then traded to Minnesota Wild in 2007-08 season. Signed as a free agent by Phoenix Coyotes in 2008 and traded to Tampa Bay Lightning in 2009. He has 29 goals, 62 assists and 996 penalty minutes in 495 NHL games, plus one goals and 59 penalty minutes in 25 play-off games.



Garth Murray (C) - Born 1982 in Regina, played four seasons with the Pats from 1998 to 2002. Scored 88 goals and had 77 assists in 267 games, plus 4 goals, 5 assists in 21 play-off games. Played in the Memorial Cup in 2001 when the Regina Pats were host team. Won the Gold Medal with Canada at Four Nations Cup in 2000 and won the Gold Medal with Canada at the 2002 World Junior Championship. Drafted 79th overall by New York Rangers in 2001. Traded to Montreal Canadiens in 2005, traded early in 2007-08 season to Florida Panthers but missed most of the season with a leg injury. Signed as a free agent by Phonenix Coyotes in 2008. Signed by Calgary Glames in 2009. Entered 2009-10 season with eight goals and two assists in 116 NHL games, and he had no points in six play-off games.

Filip Novak (D) - The offensively gifted rearguard spent three season with the Regina Pats from 1999 to 2002. Played in the Memorial Cup when the Pats were hosts in 2001. He scored 36 goals and had 128 assists in 171 games, plus had four goals, 10 assists in 19 play-off games. Second-team WHL all-star in 2001 and first-team WHL all-star in 2002. Drafted 64th overall by New York Rangers in 2000. Names to AHL all-rookie team in 2003. Traded to Florida Panthers in 2002. Missed the entire 2003-04 season with an ankle injury. Traded to Ottawa Senators in 2005 and signed as a free agent by Columbus Blue Jackets in 2006. Born 1982 in Budejovice, Czech Republic. Played for Riga Dynamo in the Russia League (KHL) in 2008-09. Had no points in 17 NHL games.




Derek Boogaard (D) - The tough guy played only five games with the Pats in 1999-2000 season before being traded to Prince George Cougars, then Medicine Hat Tigers. He had no points and 17 penalty minutes in the five games with the Pats. Born 1982 in Saskatoon. Drafted 202nd overall by Minnesota Wild in 2001. Midway through the 2002-03 season, he turned pro and joined the Louisiana Ice Gators of the East Coast hockey League (ECHL). He then spent two seasons with the Houston Aeros before earning a roster spot with the Minnesota Wild in 2005-06. Signed with New York Rangers for the 2010-11 season. Was Nicknamed "Boogeyman". Died May 13, 2011 in his Minnesota Apartment. Scored 3 goals, had 13 assists and 589 penalty minutes in 277 NHL games, plus one assist in 10 play-off games.

Shawn Belle (D) - Played for games with 2000-01 Pats before being traded to Tri-City Americans. Had three assists with the Pats. Drafted 30th overall by St. Louis Blues in 2003. Born 1985 in Edmonton. Played for Canada in 2002-03 on under-18 team. Pllayed for Canada at the World Junior Championship in 2004 and 2005, winning the Gold Medal each time. He played mostly in the AHL. Traded to Dallas Stars in 2004, traded to Minnesota Wild in 2006-07, traded to Montreal Canadiens in 2009-10, In 2010-11, played 5 games with Edmonton Oilers and 4 games with Colorado Avalanche. Has one assist in 20 NHL games.


Garnet Exelby - (D) - After two and one-half season with Saskatoon Blades, joined the Pats in 2000-01 season ... played in 201 Memorial Cup went Pats were hosts ... scored two goals and eight assists in 22 games with Pats and had two assists in six playoff games ... born in 1981 in St. Anne, Mnitoba .... drafted 217th overall by Atlanta Thrashers in 1999 ... helped Chicago Wolves win the Calder Cup in 2002 ... cracked Thrashers lineup in 2003-04 and has been in the NHL since ... traded to Toronto Maple Leafs in 2009 ...

Played in 408 NHL games, had 7 goals, 43 assists, 50 points and 584 penalty minutes. Was in 4 playoff games, no points, 6 penalty
minutes.

Josh Harding - (G) - The big goalie had a great junior career, playing with the Pats for three season, before being traded midway in 2003-04 to Brandon Wheat Kings ... born in Regina in 1984 ... compiled 57-51-16 record with the Pats ... helped Canada win a silver cup at the 2004 world junior championship ... second-team WHL all-star in 2002 and first-team WHL all-star in 2003 ... WHL goaltender-of-the-year in 2003 and WHL player-of-the-year in 2003 ... drafted 38th overall by Minnesota Wild in 2002 ...




Rick Rypien - (C) - A Gritty forward, played three seasons with Pats from 2002-05 ... born in 1984 in Coleman, Alberta. ... scored 47 goals and 67 assists in 179 WHL games and added 493 penalty minutes, had one goal, two assists and 39 penalty minutes in nine playoff games ... signed tryout contract with Manitoba Moose of the AHL, then signed as a free agent by Vancouver Canucks later in 2005 .... missed most of 2006-07 season with an injury ... missed most of 2008 season with injuries ... Died in 2010 ... Played in 119 games, 9 goals, 7 assists, 16 points, 226 penalty minutes. Was in 17 playoff games, had 3 assists, and 47 in penalty minutes.


Colton Orr - (RW) - The tough forward played for Swift Current Broncos and Kamloop Blazers before joing the Pats midway in the 2002-03 season ... scored six goals, two assists and added 170 penalty minutes in 37 games with the Regina Pats and had no points in three playoff games ... born 1982 in Winnipeg, Manitoba ... signed as a free agent by Boston Bruins in 2001 ... played in minors for three years before cracking the Bruins lineup in 2005-06 ... claimed off waivers in 2005-06 season by New York Rangers ... traded to New York Rangers same season, and played until 2008-09 ... signed as a unrestricted free agent by Toronto Maple Leafs in 2009, played until 2011-12 .... Played in 378 games, 11 goals, 9 assists, 20 points, 921 penalty minutes and was in 12 playoff games, had no point.