Gordie Howe was born in Floral, Saskatchewan in 1928 and grew up in Saskatoon. He was one of nine kids.
Gordie’s late father Albert Howe “never thought he’d amount to anything.” Gordie had dyslexia; he also failed Grade Three not once, but three times.
But that “Clumsy, backwards and bashful” kid sure played some mean hockey.
By the time he retired from pro hockey, Gordie Howe’s combined NHL and WHA stats placed him first.
He’s Mr. Hockey. Period.
I was scrolling through Twitter last night when I read the unfortunate news: Howe’s family says he suffered a stroke Sunday, from which he may not recover. [UPDATE: He’s showing signs of improvement!]
Wishing my friend Gordie Howe all the best, you’re in all of our thoughts and prayers.
— Stephen Harper (@pmharper) October 29, 2014
I’ve been thinking about how to write this. This is not the kind of news Canadians want to hear about a legend, regardless of the inevitability that at his age of 86, nature will take its toll. To us, he is and always will be a hockey hero.
We’re concerned, of course; we’re Canadians. It’s in our makeup to care and to remember. But let’s not carry heavy hearts. Let’s re-watch his best goals…best hits…or this clip, from the 1980 Detroit All Star Game, where the audience goes wild when he skates onto the ice. Cheers to one of the greatest players of all time: Mr. Hockey.