‘61 Trail Smoke Eater passes on

The ‘61 Trail Smoke Eaters’ family lost one of its own as Rossland resident George Ferguson passed away on Saturday.

The ‘61 Trail Smoke Eaters’ family lost one of its own as Rossland resident George Ferguson passed away on Saturday.

Ferguson was an integral part of the Smoke Eater team that won the ‘61 World championship and the ‘62 Alan Cup, and also attended the ‘63 World Hockey championships in Sweden.

A hockey player through and through, Ferguson was always ready to back up anyone he played with, and his friends, so they never had to worry, said teammate and former Smokie captain Cal Hockley.

“As far as being a hockey player he wasn’t fancy, but he was always tough to play against,” added Hockley. “When he went in a corner you knew he was there. He was a big part of our team.

“Fergy did his job extremely well – he was a good defenceman.”

The Saskatchewan native and former Moose Jaw Canuck spent time with the Chicago Blackhawks, and played in Kamloops before joining the Warriors in Rossland.

He was picked up by the Smokies during the 1960 WIHL playoffs and played with the team for many years after.

“As far as I was concerned, if you were stuck in a dark alley and you wanted somebody with you, George would be the guy you want beside you,” said Hockley.

A memorial service will be held for Ferguson at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 14 in Rossland Friday at 2 p.m.