By Fred Wallace
Hi, this is Fred Wallace with " Off the Wire ".
Family & friends of Frank Bergeron shared great stories last week when the Owen Sound Sports Hall of Fame inductee passed away.
Frank Bergeron was a defenceman who had a lengthy career in pro hockey in the 1940's and 50's and then followed with a prominent stretch in local Senior & Intermediate Hockey in our region.
What's remarkable is the geography Frank covered in his professional playing days, essentially playing coast to coast in North America, suiting up in San Francisco for the Shamrocks and then later for clubs in Halifax.
In between the continent crossing, Frank also played in the American Hockey League at Springfield with the storied Indians, and at Buffalo with the old Bisons.
When his professional days concluded, Frank Bergeron was a prominent performer in our region for the Owen Sound Mercury's, the Meaford Chevy's, the Collingwood Shipbuilders and the Durham Huskies.
One of Frank's defence partners from the Senior era told me the strategy for partnering on the blue line with Frank was pretty simple;.... just let Frank handle everything.
And there were other stories from friends and family;
- How he met his wife, Irene. While Frank was playing for the Hamilton Tigers, Irene was a very vocal fan screaming from the stands.
- How decades before the Hanson Brothers clipped the opposition bench in the movies, Frank did essentially the same thing to the boisterous rinkside fans at Barrie in the Dunlop Street Arena one night
- & I heard another tale that when he was the player-coach with the Durham Huskies the ownership group came to him at the end of the season with his pay cheque. Because the Huskies had been eliminated from the playoffs and did not win a championship, he refused to accept the payment...it tells you a lot about Frank Bergeron.
Inducted into the Owen Sound Sports Hall of Fame in 1999, Frank Bergeron passed away at age 93.
I'm Fred Wallace