Mac’s Musings: Former Royals superstar in fight of his life

Claude McIntosh ~ Mac's Musings
Mac’s Musings: Former Royals superstar in fight of his life
Cornwall Royals logo.
Claude McIntosh.

Former Cornwall Royals superstar Dale Hawerchuk calls it the fight of his life, and considering what he is up against, it is not exactly an overstatement.
The fight is far bigger than any of the Oshawa native’s battles during a 16-year NHL Hall of Fame career in which he scored 518 goals and accumulated 1,409 points playing for Winnipeg Jets, who drafted him first overall in 1981 and signed him to a five-year, $800,000 contract, Buffalo Sabres, St. Louis Blues and Philadelphia Flyers.

In early September, as training camp was about to open, the Barrie Colts announced that their head coach would be taking a leave of absence (the entire 2019-20 season) to deal with what was called a “health issue.”

But weeks later an interview with The Sports Network (TSN) Hawerchuk confirmed that he was being treated for stomach cancer.

“For some reason the Lord put me in this kind of fight and I’m ready to fight it … and live to tell the story,” he told Rick Westhead, TSN senior correspondent.

“Like anything in life, you just got to dig in and go for what your goals are.”

Marc Bissonnette, Eastern Ontario scout for the Colts and a close friend, said he was shocked when the team owner called him to say Hawerhuck had been diagnosed with stomach cancer and was stepping aside.

During the summer Bissonnette played a round of golf with Hawerchuk and there was no indication of a major health issue.

The chemo has taken a toll on the 56-year-old’s body. He has lost around 50 pounds and struggles to eat with a feeding tube.

Doctors hope the chemo treatments – one week on, one week off – will shrink the tumour so that it came be removed.

FROM THE VAULT – This week 1970 – Cornwall Street Railway gave its 25 bus drivers termination notices effective Dec. 31. The company was putting the brakes on its transit service. … A new form of nylon developed by chemist Dr. O. A. Battista, a Cornwall native, was patented by the FMC Corporation. … New York State Police in Massena charged 11 Cornwall residents aged 16-21 with various drug offences. One pleaded guilty and sentenced to 30 days in Canton Jail. … Courtaulds announced that a planned shutdown during Christmas-New Year’s would be extended to seven weeks. … Ontario Hydro announced that power rates would increase 7% and increases would be needed each year to help finance demand for expansion. … Bell Telephone office at 434 Pitt St. was handling 6,500 operated assisted long distance calls each day and another 3,000 calls for information. The office employed 63 operators. … The federal government planned to spend $1 million expanding the Cornwall Harbour. Work would include increasing the water depth to 27 feet and improving wharf facilities. … Chemcell Chemicals donated several acres of its property and Inverarden House as an historical site for use as a museum or art gallery. The home was built in 1816. It would be operated by the Ontario Heritage Foundation and national and historic parks branch of the federal government. … Cornwall Kinsmen Club endorsed a plan presented by the Seaway Valley International Bathtub Derby committee to preserve Cornwall Canal. The federal government planned to fill in the canal from Cumberland Street to Marlborough Street. … Leading the list of 394 St. Lawrence High School graduates were Ontario Scholars Francoise Lalonde, Pierre Lefebvre, Jeannette Lalonde and Pierre Poirier. … Actress Jane Fonda was sued by a Cleveland police officer for $300,000. She was alleged to have kicked the officer in the thigh while he was attempting to arrest her at the Cleveland airport. The 32-year-old actress was charged with assault and attempting to smuggle pills into the U. S. … Pittsburgh Steelers rookie quarterback Terry Bradshaw said he would ask for a trade if the NFL club made him a back-up to veteran Terry Hanratty who replaced him in a game against Cincinnati. …. Canada Savings Bonds paid an annual interest rate of 7.75%. … Cornwall Royals hit bottom in the 10-team Quebec Major Junior Hockey League with a 5-1 loss to Sherbrooke Castors. Pierre Duguay had the lone goal.

TRIVIA ANSWER Beach Furniture was on the southeast corner of Sydney and Ninth Streets (Tudor Place). The factory started out in 1908 as the Cornwall Furniture Company but soon went bankrupt with several local residents losing their investment. It was purchased by Charles A. Beach. With his sons J. C. and C. C. in charge of the plant, Beach Furniture with 60 employees manufactured bedroom and dining room furniture. The plant closed in 1958.

TRIVIA This international fast food outlet opened in a converted house at 131 Augustus St. in April 1965. It served 4,000 meals during an eight-hour opening-day promotion. It still operates in the city with two outlets.

SPORTS STUFF For the second time in two years Wayne Lauber came up with a pinch-hitting winning performance. Filling in for Gerry Goulet, Lauber iced a Dave Witherspoon Memorial Trophy victory with an impressive 14-5 win in the 12-team Cornwall Curling Centre senior men’s October draw final. Making up the supporting cast were third Mario Lemire, second Marcello Delgreco and lead Duncan McCrimmon. Gilles Viau (third Peter Vanloon, second Bob Lockhart, lead Ross Sommerville) claimed second place while Rene Desrosiers (third Ron Racine, second Dave Evans, lead Guy Lalonde) nailed down third place. … Gerry James, who holds a record that will never be matched, turned 85 on Oct. 22. In overlapping seasons, James played in the 1959 Grey Cup with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Won. A few days later he was skating with the Toronto Maple Leafs (he played seven seasons) and played in the Stanley Cup final in late April. Lost. He has four Grey Cup championship rings. Zero Stanley Cup rings.

THIS AND THAT You would think that in a country that has given the world so much that it could come up with better people to run for the world’s most important job. … A study shows that Ontario schools have a $15.9 billion repair backlog. Kind of hard to blame Doug Ford cutbacks on this one. … I’m told that among the many things millennials don’t do is ring a door bell. Instead, they text, “We’re here.” … For the second straight year a Cornwall company has made the Globe and Mail Report on Business Top 400 growing Canadian companies list. Laminacorr Industries on Marleau Avenue manufactures and transforms corrugated plastic sheets. According to the report, it had 2019 revenues between $10-$25 million and a three-year revenue growth of 86%. It has 80 employees.

QUOTED “In most cases being a good boss means hiring talented people and then getting out of their way.” – Tina Fey

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