September 02, 2007

Doug Maxwell

I learned this morning that a member of the Scottish Curler team has died. Doug Maxwell passed away peacefully at his home in Waterloo, Ontario, on Friday August 31, losing his battle against cancer.

It has been said of Doug that he knew more about curling and curlers than anyone else. He played a variety of roles in the sport: as promoter, innovator, builder, broadcaster, print journalist and author.

Doug was a great supporter of the Scottish Curler magazine. He was a great team member - his Canadian Commentary column arrived promptly every month and, you could be sure, his words would be interesting AND provocative!

I first got to know Doug in 1980 in Moncton at the Silver Broom World Curling Championship. I was a rookie on the press bench. Doug, the executive director of the event, could not have been more supportive and helpful. After Moncton he encouraged my efforts as a member of the curling media. When I took over as Editor of the Scottish Curler five years ago, Doug was still there with his support.

His most recent book Tales of a Curling Hack was published last year. His contributions to the world of international curling will be well documented elsewhere. For now I've lost a friend.

Join with me in thinking of Doug's wife Anne, and their family, at this time.

A memorial service is planned for Sunday, September 9, at 2 pm, at Annesley United Church, 82 Toronto Street South, Markdale, Ontario.

The photo is of Doug when he visted Glasgow with the Silver Broom site selection committee in 1982. The group gave the nod to the Glasgow organisers to stage the event in the Kelvin Hall in 1985, building from scratch a temporary ice arena with seating for 6,000, plus all the associated facilities, in just eight days and nights. The photo is from Richard Harding's Curling magazine.


Gordon said...

Very moving post, but then as Doug's son, I am biased in this regard.

Also, full points for knowing that Dad actually made his home in Waterloo. Several sources have it as Markdale. Ironic that someone from way across the pond would be the one who has this right!

Gord Maxwell

Gramacho83F said...

All of us who love the sport of curling owe Doug Maxwell more than we can know.

He was in at the start of the World Championships. He was on the site selection committee for longer than he would have wanted to remember! He invented time clocks. He invented the Skins format. He wrote columns and books. He commentated. He knew everyone in curling that was worth knowing and - more importantly - treated them all the same.

I met him in the early 80's and was involved in the Glasgow bid in 1983 as the Sales Manager of the Holiday Inn - later the headquarters hotel. He was unfailingly courteous at all times. He was always good fun to be around.

Every time that I met him subsequently, he remembered my name - amazing!

The last time I met him was in the Granite Club in Toronto during the Centenary Canadian Tour. He signed a copy of his book, "Canada Curls". I will treasure the book for the rest of my time. He was in sparkling form at the dinner later that night and ...

He remembered my name!

A sad loss and my thoughts and good wishes go out to his family.