Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Manitoba sports world loses legend

Addison enshrined in province's hockey and baseball halls of fame

  • Print
BILL ADDISON, one of the province's most influential sports executives and organizers, passed away Tuesday night.

He celebrated his 100th birthday last April. One of the events to mark the milestone was Addison walking on his own to centre ice at MTS Centre to drop the ceremonial first puck at an AHL game.

"He wanted no help to do it, because he knew he could. He was a very proud man and a very proud hockey guy," said colleague Frank McKinnon, the former commissioner of the Manitoba Junior Hockey League.

Addison, a Carberry native, spent 21 years as commissioner of the league.

The former president of the Manitoba Amateur Hockey Association (1967-70) and founding member of the Manitoba Sports Federation was inducted into the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame's first class in 1985 and into the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame in 1993.

McKinnon remembers Addison as "a prince of a gentleman. He was as honest as the day is long."

In the hockey world, Addison may be best remembered as the manager of the last Manitoba team to win the Memorial Cup, the 1958-59 Winnipeg Braves.

The Braves, featuring such players as Ted Green, Ernie Wakely, Laurie Langrell, Howie Hughes, Gary Bergman, Bobby Leiter and Wayne Larkin, ousted the Scotty Bowman-coached Peterborough TPT's that spring.

"I watched that team win in 1959," McKinnon said. "He was very proud of that, always."

The man who succeeded Addison as the MJHL commissioner, current Manitoba Hockey Foundation president Gary Cribbs, had a long relationship with Addison, especially over a cribbage board.

"The day I met him in Brandon at an MAHA meeting, he asked me if I could play the game, and we played crib once a week right up through December," Cribbs said. "We always played for a two-dollar bill, and you had to win four straight to get the 'Queen'.

Cribbs said Addison loved baseball as much as hockey.

"He's in the Manitoba Baseball Hall of Fame, too," Cribbs said. "Baseball is really what he loved to talk about."

McKinnon said Addison always provided him with wise counsel when he took over the MJHL job that Addison had done so well for more than two decades. "He ran the league with authority, but he was also a very understanding man," McKinnon said. "He was a great help to me. "

Addison's sports-managing career began in 1925 when, at the ripe old age of 17, he was named player/manager of the Carman baseball team. In 1956, he was manager of the Canadian PONY League baseball champions, the Winnipeg Garry Orioles.

In 1988, he was recognized by the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association for his contribution to the growth of amateur hockey, and then-Sport Minister Jim Ernst presented him with a Manitoba Gold Medal for outstanding community service.

This weekend, including Thursday night at MTS Centre, a moment of silence will be observed in Addison's memory before all MJHL games, current commissioner Kim Davis said.

A memorial service for Addison is planned for Wednesday at 1 p.m. at Westwood Community Church, 401 Westwood Drive.

 

-- Staff

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 9, 2009 C1

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Key of Bart - The Floodway Connection

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A nesting goose sits on the roof of GoodLife Fitness at 143 Nature Way near Kenaston as the morning sun comes up Wednesday morning- See Bryksa’s Goose a Day Photo- Day 07- Web crop-May 09, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • Jia Ping Lu practices tai chi in Assiniboine Park at the duck pond Thursday morning under the eye of a Canada goose  - See Bryksa 30 Day goose challenge Day 13- May 17, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Who are the real Bombers?

View Results

Ads by Google