The Reminder is making its archives back to 2003 available on our website. Please note that, due to technical limitations, archive articles are presented without the usual formatting.
The 1957 Flin Flon Bombers, winners of the Memorial Challenge Cup, are often credited with putting the community on the hockey map. Now an area resident wants members of that legendary team honoured with a place on the map of Flin Flon. John Forster of Payuk Lake has written to City Council requesting that newly-established streets in Flin Flon be named after local players on the revered squad. "Who brought the most long lasting glory to Flin Flon? The Memorial Cup (winning) Flin Flon Bombers," he wrote in a letter reviewed at Tuesday's Council meeting. "A lot of people would like to see new streets in Flin Flon named after the local boys who played on the team." Councillor Tom Therien was receptive to the idea, but said the community would first have to get to the point where new streets would be opened. Currently, there are no such plans, he said. See 'Contributed' P.# Con't from P.# "At that point in time, it might be nice to recognize a couple of these guys," he said. "They certainly have contributed to the name of Flin Flon, that's for sure, as have other people who have streets named after them." Dave McPherson, president of the Flin Flon Bombers, called Forster's concept "a very good idea." "When you talk to anyone from out of town, the first thing they bring up is the Flin Flon Bombers," he said. "So I think that would be a great recognition of a team that did bring us glory." In McPherson's view, the legacy left by the 1957 team, considered underdogs by most observers, cannot be underestimated. "Any time you can bring a Memorial Cup to a community of this size, it's simply amazing," he said. Forster's letter was referred to the Committee of the Whole for further review. According to the book Flin Flon, published by the Flin Flon Historical Society, eight members of the championship team were products of the local minor hockey system: Mel Pearson; Duane Rupp; Ted Hampson; Ron Hutchinson; Ken Willey; Carl Forster; George Konik; and Wayne Sproxton. Filling out the roster were Harvey Fleming; Cliff Lennartz; Mike Kardash; Pat Ginnell; George Wood; Barry Beatty; Rod Lee; Lynn Davis; Orland Kurtenbach; and Jean Gauthier. Coached by Bob Kirk, the 1957 Bombers took home the Abbott Memorial Cup, the Corbeau Cup and the Robin Hood Trophy en route to capturing the Memorial Challenge Cup. The Maroon and White defeated the Ottawa Canadiens, then the farm club for the Montreal Canadiens, to bring the coveted Cup to Northern Manitoba. For more than four decades, that edition of the Bombers has been a source of pride for Flin Flonners, serving as proof to many that smaller communities can do more than hold their own against larger centres. In 1999, the club's story was the focus of the musical Bombertown, which was performed several times at the R.H. Channing Auditorium to rave reviews from residents. Also on Tuesday, City Council reviewed a letter from resident Napoleon (Knapp) Schmidt requesting that Horace Avenue, located near the Adams Street apartments, be renamed "Schmidt Avenue" in honour of his father, Joseph. Joseph Schmidt, who served Canada in both World Wars, moved to Flin Flon in 1941. Knapp also wrote that he would like to see part of Flinty's Boardwalk renamed "Maggie's Walk" in honour of his mother. Maggie and Joseph once lived near what is now the boardwalk in one of three houses where Stittco Energy Ltd. now stands. Knapp told The Reminder of his hopes this past August, and included a copy of that article with his letter to Council. Councillor Therien said that inconveniences that could be incurred by residents would have to be considered before Council decided to change the name of a street. Knapp's letter was also referred to the Committee of the Whole.