Coach of the Year
Legendary coach John Fitzgerald, who profoundly inf luenced the lives of hundreds of young Canadian athletes both on the track and off, died suddenly of an aortic aneurysm on Oct. 26, 2018, with his wife, Lorraine, by his side.
In his 20s, Fitzgerald became a nationally-ranked marathon runner but soon found himself gravitating towards coaching. His athletes included five-time Olympian racewalker Tim Berrett, Pan Am Games silver medallist Ann Peel, and Canadian national team marathoner Jason Warick to name a few. After settling in Saskatchewan, F it zger a ld employed a c a r ing a nd unort hodox approach to coaching hundreds of youths and young adults over the years, which once involved shovelling a layer of snow off the ice on a frozen northern Saskatchewan lake with Tim Berrett, in order to create an 800-metre loop for a two-hour interval training session.
In the words of Tim Berrett: “Once we did his workouts, we felt we could do anything…He prepared us to be good people that contributed, that produced, in life.”
Fit zgerald was inducted into the Athletics Canada Hall of Fame this past August.
Read more about Fitzgerald on p.52.