Former National Track Coach Des Dickie Passes Away
On April 13, Emmanuel Desmond “Des” Dickie, 72, former Canadian National Team track coach during the 1980s and 1990s, passed away at his home in Brampton, Ont.
Born in Palo Seco, Trinidad and Tobago, Dickie immigrated to Canada when he was 22, first working at CN Rail, then began his 30-year career as a competitive track-cycling coach in the late 1970s. Dickie’s deceased brother, Ronald, was a former executive member of the Trinidad and Tobago Cycling Federation.
Dickie coached such top Canadian track riders as Olympians Curt Harnett, Brian Walton, who both won Games medals, and Tanya Dubnicoff, who won a title at the Track World Championships.
“A journey that started over 37 years ago with a simple handshake has come to an end. Desi, thank you for teaching me how to eat overcooked liver and onions with proper pepper sauce, how to use our ‘nine lives’ to their fullest, and how to apply Tudor Bumpa’s
‘Periodization Training for Sports’ to suit our needs. The journeys, memories and stories we shared from our humble beginnings live with me every day. RIP my man. Good luck on your next adventure,” wrote Harnett on his Facebook page.
During the mid-1990s, Dickie was charged with two counts of sexual misconduct, but was acquitted. Following his termination as a result of the charges, he won a wrongful dismissal suit against the Canadian Cycling Association.
Dickie moved to the U.S., where he began working with USA Cycling and later returned home to work with the Trinidad and Tobago Cycling Federation.
He is survived by wife, Lynda; daughter, Tanya; son, Cory (Cassandra); and grandchildren Patrick and Brodi.
Pedal joins the cycling community in sending condolences to Dickie’s family and friends.
Des Dickie, former national team track coach.