Monday, June 22, 2015


Over the weekend, Al and Lorraine Shaw hosted their annual NHL Oldtimers BBQ. It was a picture-perfect day weather wise with pleasant temperatures and plenty of sunshine.

The three gentlemen in the above photo - (L to R) Mr. (Bob) Beckett, Mr. (Gary) Collins and Mr. (Danny) Lewicki - look like they could have had featured roles in Quentin Tarantino's film 'Reservoir Dogs'.

Decked out in their shades, you would think these guys had just pulled off a major heist! Of the three, Mr. Beckett appears to be the muscle and the guy asking, "Are you looking at me?"

The one downer during the Saturday afternoon festivities came when Al informed the gathering that Wally Stanowski would not be attending. Unfortunately, Wally is back in the hospital. The 96 year-old Stanowski is the oldest living former Toronto Maple Leaf.

I spoke with Wally prior to the Chicago-Tampa Bay Stanley Cup Final getting underway and he stated, without hesitation, that the Hawks would be crowned Cup champions. And his prediction came true when Chicago defeated Tampa Bay in game six. It was Chicago's first Stanley Cup title on home ice since April 12, 1938.

And what was Wally Stanowski up to on that evening back in 1938?

The answer - Wally was playing for the St. Boniface Seals as they battled the Oshawa Generals in game two of the Memorial Cup showdown at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto.

As the copy under the above photo notes, "The Star cameraman has caught the high-stepping defenceman in the act of applying his brakes during one of his trips down ice in practice. Wally has all the earmarks of a coming star and is billed a future Toronto Maple Leaf."

Wally went on to win four Stanley Cups with the Toronto Maple Leafs starting in 1942 and adding three more - 1945, 1947 & 1948 -  after he returned serving time in World War Two.

We hope and pray Wally has a speedy recovery and is able to join us at the July lunch!

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