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Memories of Bishop still strong

Posted: 08 May 2009
Source: NewsDurhamRegion.com

Feb 04, 2009 - 04:30 AM By Brian McNair {img:1|right}OSHAWA -- Twenty-four years after being inducted as an inaugural member of the Oshawa Sports Hall of Fame and 10 since his passing, Jim Bishop's name still evokes strong memories and praise. That was certainly the case for two of the five new inductees, who were introduced at an Oshawa council meeting Monday, just prior to a reception at the General Motors Centre, now home to the Hall of Fame. "I respected him more than anything," says Jim Hinkson, who played under Bishop with the legendary Oshawa Green Gaels lacrosse team in the early 1960s. "He showed us that discipline was really important to him, having certain principles was really important to him and hard work. Those were the ingredients that he coached by." And they were ingredients that Hinkson latched onto himself as he forged his own lengthy career in the game, which saw him play or coach for 11 Canadian championship teams, three professional winners and one world champion. Hinkson will be officially inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame on Wednesday, May 27 along with another lacrosse builder, Fred Whalley, former pro baseball player Andy Stewart, golfer Ryan Hughes and hockey player Gord Myles, now deceased. "I'm speechless and I usually have a lot of words," Hinkson says of the recognition. "It's a great honour, coming from Oshawa and having gone to these all the time, its something really special for me." Hinkson, who at 19 scored the very first goal for the Green Gaels in 1963, says he and his teammates had no idea how good that team would become. But, under Bishop's tutelage, the Green Gaels not only won the Minto Cup Jr. A championship that year, but an unprecedented seven in a row. Whalley also played a big role on that team, filling in as coach for Bishop for four games in 1963 and serving as the manager from 1963 through to 1966. Whalley, who turned 75 last Thursday, recognizes the strong lacrosse programs now in place in Whitby and Clarington, but credits those Oshawa teams of the sixties for laying the foundation. "Of course we paved the way and nobody's going to forget what happened around here in the sixties," he says. "We had the greatest team there ever was in lacrosse. It's paved the way for the Warriors and the other teams." Of the other inductees, Stewart reached the very peak of his sport, playing briefly in Major League Baseball with the Kansas City Royals in 1997, when he doubled in his first at-bat. But he will be remembered more for his international play, as he helped Canada win bronze at the 1999 Pan-Am Games and to a fourth place finish at the 2004 Olympics, leading the team in batting average both times. Myles had a lengthy minor pro and amateur career playing hockey, including four years with the Whitby Dunlops when he won two Allan Cups and one world championship. Sadly, in 1978 at the age of 46, he died of brain cancer, which was later determined to be caused by his job as a fire-fighter. Hughes, the youngest of the new inductees at 38, is already a member of the Durham College and Ontario Colleges Athletic Association halls of fame thanks to a career that saw him win an incredible four straight OCAA individual championships with the Lords from 1988 to 1991. Now the director of golf for a private course in Windsor, where he lives with his wife, two boys and billets Windsor Spitfires star Taylor Hall, Hughes says the latest honour is the greatest yet. "It's always an honour but I think this hits home a little more because this is my hometown and Oshawa has a very special place in my heart," he says.

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