Douglas Fisher, who served as chair of Hockey Canada’s board of directors from 1974-77 and was instrumental in the creation of the Canada Cup, as well as the 1972 Summit Series between Canada and the Soviet Union, passed away on September 18, one day shy of his 90th birthday.
Prior to the historic ’72 series, he spent months dealing with Soviet Union, International Ice Hockey Federation, NHL owners, the National Hockey League Players Association and the Government of Canada.
Born in Sioux Lookout, Ont., on , Fisher entered the public spotlight in 1957, when he upset C.D. Howe, a larger-than-life Liberal known as “the minister of everything,” to earn a seat in the House of Commons with the CCF party – now the NDP.
He was re-elected three times and served eight-and-a-half years in Parliament before stepping down.
Fisher began writing for the Toronto Telegram while still a sitting MP, before moving on to the Toronto Sun, where he wrote political columns until his retirement at the age of . He became one of the most respected political columnists in Canada, earning the title of dean of the Press Gallery and becoming a confidante of journalists and politicians.
In 1941, Fisher joined the army. He joined the 12th Armoured Car Regiment, the 12th Manitoba Dragoons and spent the war as a private, repeatedly declining promotion.
He landed in Normandy with his regiment just after D-Day and fought through northwest Europe, ending the war in Germany.
He used his postwar veteran’s benefits to go to the University of Toronto, returning eventually to northern Ontario to teach history at Port Arthur Collegiate Institute.
Fisher is survived by five sons, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and Tobias.
Hockey Canada extends its condolences to the family and friends of Douglas Fisher.