Craw­ford coached Roy­als one sea­son

Standard-Freeholder (Cornwall) - - NEWS - PAUL SVOBODA

Belleville lost one of its most out­stand­ing cit­i­zens Satur­day morn­ing when Floyd Craw­ford died at the age of 89.

Craw­ford cap­tained the Belleville McFar­lands se­nior A hockey club to an Al­lan Cup na­tional ti­tle in 1958 and a world cham­pi­onship gold medal one year later in Prague.

Craw­ford was well known to Corn­wall hockey fans as well. He coached the Corn­wall Roy­als of the OHL for one year, in the 1984-85 sea­son, guid­ing the team to a record of 34-30-2. And of course, three of Craw­ford’s sons — Marc, Bobby and Louis — played for the Roy­als. Marc Craw­ford also coached the team, for two sea­sons — in 198990 and 1990-91.

Orig­i­nally from Toronto, Floyd Craw­ford re­mained in Belleville where he and his wife, Pauline, a ter­rific ath­lete in her own right, raised a fam­ily of nine chil­dren — seven boys and two girls.

Craw­ford re­mained heav­ily in­volved in vir­tu­ally all lev­els of hockey in Belleville af­ter his play­ing days, from Satur­day-morn­ing house league at old Me­mo­rial Arena to ma­jor ju­nior with the OHL Bulls.

Craw­ford coached the Belleville Bob­cats to an all-On­tario Jr. B Suther­land Cup ti­tle in 1980. Nine­teen years later, Craw­ford was chief scout when the Bulls — coached by his son, Louis — cap­tured their only OHL cham­pi­onship in 1999.

One of Craw­ford’ s for­mer team mates with the McFar­land sr em em­bers him asa great team­mate and friend. Fel­low Macs de­fence­man, Lionel Botly, said Craw­ford led by ex­am­ple.

“Floyd was a good friend as well as team­mate,” said Botly. “He was a leader by ex­am­ple. He never quit. He cer­tainly set a great ex­am­ple for the team.”

Botly said Craw­ford’s fiery com­pet­i­tive na­ture made him a dan­ger­ous foe to en­emy play­ers who dared to skate into his path at Me­mo­rial Arena in the late 1950s.

“What I al­ways said about Floyd was that when he hit other play­ers, he tried to put them out into Mar­ket Square,” said Botly. “When you were hit by Floyd, you were re­ally hit.”

Botly said Craw­ford truly cared about his team­mates — from stand­out fan favourites to fourth-line lesser lights.

“Even to the very end, Floyd was al­ways true to the play­ers,” said Botly. “He al­ways made sure all of the play­ers got credit, not just a few. He made sure ev­ery­body was in­cluded in every­thing that hap­pened.”

That in­cluded a ri­otous cross-Canada train ride back to Belleville from Kelowna, BC, where the Macs ral­lied from a 3-1 best-of-seven se­ries deficit to de­feat the home­town Pack­ers in the 1958 Al­lan Cup fi­nal.

“That was some­thing mem­o­rable, com­ing home on that train,” said Botly. “It took two, maybe three days. At first, they hooked us up to a freight train to take us up to the main line.”

Floyd Craw­ford

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.