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  Prairie Gold:
Sports Heroes From Saskatchewan
 
 
Photo 1 of 5. | | |

Bob Van Impe

From 1946 to the present, Bob Van Impe has been involved with softball. From 1946 to 1965 he was either a player, a coach, a manager or an executive member of the Saskatoon Amateur Softball Association. Bob was appointed commissioner with the re-organization of the Saskatoon Senior Men's Fastball League in 1965. The following year he was named commissioner for the Saskatchewan Amateur Association and the Canadian Amateur Association.

In 1969, Van Impe was named to the highest post in the country, president of the Canadian Amateur Softball Association. He remained its president until 1986. More executive posts came his way. In 1971, he was elected North American vice-president of the International Federation. In 1973, Bob was elected vice-president of the International Federation and was also appointed to the Board of directors of the Canadian Olympic Association. Named Kinsmen Sportsman of the Year in 1979, Bob also saw one of Saskatoon's softball fields named after him.

He was selected to the Saskatoon Sports Hall of Fame in 1986.

Text courtesy of Ned Powers

No photo currently available. If you have a photo to donate, contact the Local History Room at 306.975.7578 or lhstaff@saskatoonlibrary.ca.

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Photo 2 of 5. | | |

Ed Van Impe

Ed Van Impe was one of the first players to join Philadelphia Flyers in the National Hockey League's expansion in 1967-68 and, as fortune would have it, the Flyers became the first-ever expansion team to win the Stanley Cup.

Van Impe played midget arid juvenile hockey in the Riversdale district of Saskatoon and then played three seasons with the Saskatoon Quaker juniors.

He turned pro with Calgary of the Western League in 1960-61, spent four seasons with Buffalo of the American League before being called up to the Chicago Blackhawks for regular defence duty in 1966-67.

He was drafted by Philadelphia and saw the Flyers build into a winning club. Their first close call came when they lost to Montreal in the 1972-73 semifinals.

In 1973-74, they beat Atlanta and New York Rangers along the playoff trail and then beat Boston, four games to two, including a 1-0 victory in the final game. In 1974-75, they beat Toronto and New York Islanders in the first two rounds and then beat Buffalo, four games to two, including a 2-0 decision in the final game.

Van Impe played 700 NHL games, getting 27 goals, 126 assists, 153 points and 1,025 penalty minutes. He played in 66 playoff games. He was captain of the Flyers for four seasons. He was selected to play in two of the NHL's all-star games.

Van Impe was traded to Pittsburgh Penguins in March, 1976, and played a full season before retiring.

Text courtesy of Ned Powers

No photo currently available. If you have a photo to donate, contact the Local History Room at 306.975.7578 or lhstaff@saskatoonlibrary.ca.

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Photo 3 of 5. | | |

Eleanor Van Impe

Born in 1909, Eleanor began skating in Conquest, Saskatchewan. She spent a couple of years in Regina before joining the Saskatoon speedskating club in 1931. For eleven years Eleanor set local and provincial records and competed in the national and North American championships. Her specialties were races from 220 yards to 3/4 of a mile.

In 1932, she missed the 3/4 mile world record by 2/lOths of a second. Eleanor took part in races that were often part of winter carnivals and hockey games. She did some coaching with the Saskatoon Lions club after her competitive days were over. An outstanding athlete, Eleanor also excelled in softball, bowling, curling and golf. She also found time to be a figure skating judge. From 1928 to 1939, while a speed skater, she amassed 55 first place finishes and ten second place finishes.

She was inducted into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame in 1984 and joined the select group in the Saskatoon Hall in 1986.

Text courtesy of Ned Powers

No photo currently available. If you have a photo to donate, contact the Local History Room at 306.975.7578 or lhstaff@saskatoonlibrary.ca.

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Photo 4 of 5. | | |


Mary Wilkinson

Mary Wilkinson / Mary Varey

Basketball, Swimming, Track & Field (B.A., '45)

Mary (Varey) Wilkinson graduated from Nutana Collegiate and entered the University of Saskatchewan in 1943. During her four years on campus, she competed in basketball, swimming and track and field.

She was a three year member of the Huskiette basketball team and a two year member of both the track and field and swimming teams.

Mary received a Major Athletic Award in 1945.

As well as competing in three intervarsity sports, Mary was very active competing in interfaculty tennis, track, curling and badminton. She served as President of the Women's Athletic Board in 1944-45.

Text courtesy of the University of Saskatchewan Wall of Fame.

Date: 1945

Copyright information: Over 50 years old - order from the University of Saskatchewan Archives

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Photo 5 of 5. | | |

We hope that you have enjoyed reading about some of Saskatchewan's sports heroes.

If you have a photograph of someone or a team listed in Prairie Gold that we do not have a photo for and are willing to donate it, please contact us.

Due to their nature and sometimes ambiguous origin the photographs seen here and those on file at the Local History Room are continuously being updated with new information. Some of this information comes from dedicated research done by Local History staff. However some of the biggest 'breaks' have come from the public... Those that remember the people, places and events in the photo are our biggest informational resource and we ask that if you have any information about the photos to contact the Local History Room at lhstaff@saskatoonlibrary.ca or phone (306) 975-7578.

Come and visit the Local History Room the next time you are at the Frances Morrison Library.

Thank you.

Comment on this record: lhstaff@saskatoonlibrary.ca

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