|Air Photo Study|
The Saga of 1948
by Patsy Guzzo - Mainstreeter, February 1985
Thirty-eight years ago on February 8th, the Royal Canadian Air Force
Flyers Hockey Team (RCAF Flyers) representing Canada in the Olympic Winter
Games in St. Moritz, Switzerland, won
After the cessation of hostilities in 1945, a touring hockey team of air-force personnel based in England travelled to sever-al European countries for a series of exhibition games. Doctor "Sandy" Watson, now our leading opthamologist, was the manager and when transferred to Ottawa the following year, had 'visions' of taking an all-airforce team to com-pete in the 1948 Games.
Watson had a willing ally in the Air Commodore, Dave MacKell, an athlete of note in his earlier career. The Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal W.A. Curtis and the Minister of National De-fense Mr. Brooke Claxton were also hockey fans and listened attentively to the effervescent Sandy Watson who described the glory and prestige such an enterprise would bring to the RCAF.
Signals went out to all air force units in Canada and over 90 hopefuls
converged on Ottawa. Workouts were held at the local Auditor-ium where
ice was donated
Five were supplied by a local senior team named
The team was universally popular and completed all of its engagements
as well as agreeing to play several exhibition games in addit-ion to those
Above all, the club had a distinct Ottawa flavour as eleven were from
this area: Red Gravelle, Ted Hibberd, Ab Renaud, Reg Schroeter, George
McFaul, Pete Leichnitz, Frank Dunster, Louis LeCompte, Irv Taylor, Patsy
Guzzo, Coach Frank Boucher and Manager Sandy Watson.
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