Like they do every year, Campbell River Special Olympians served as caddies and volunteers at the 31st annual Howie Meeker Golf Classic held at Campbell River Golf and Country Club last year and co-hosted by Clayton Stoner (centre in purple) and Howie Meeker (centre, blue jacket). Photo by Alistair Taylor/Campbell River Mirror

Like they do every year, Campbell River Special Olympians served as caddies and volunteers at the 31st annual Howie Meeker Golf Classic held at Campbell River Golf and Country Club last year and co-hosted by Clayton Stoner (centre in purple) and Howie Meeker (centre, blue jacket). Photo by Alistair Taylor/Campbell River Mirror

Campbell River mourns passing of Howie Meeker – hockey icon, champion of Special Olympics

Canadian hockey and broadcasting legend Howie Meeker passed away Nov. 8 at age 97.

He will be greatly missed in Campbell River particularly where his Howie Meeker Golf Classic raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for Special Olympics for 31 years and Meeker himself was a great friend to Campbell River’s Special Olympians.

Special Olympics B.C. put out a statement on his passing Sunday:

“Special Olympics BC mourns the passing of Howie Meeker, an unforgettable sport icon and an influential and inspiring friend to our movement for more than four decades, who died today at the age of 97.

“Howie Meeker was a Canadian hockey legend, as a player, coach, and iconic broadcaster. For more than 40 years, he was also a powerful champion of Special Olympics athletes and programs, both nationwide and right here in B.C.

“With his influential and generous advocacy work, Meeker helped change the way our province and country see individuals with intellectual disabilities. He has also been a vital supporter of Special Olympics BC – Campbell River athletes and programs for many years, championing them and lending his name and time to their annual golf tournament that has raised more than $750,000 in its more than 30-year history.

“Meeker made a significant impact on the Special Olympics movement – an impact that has not only benefited our athletes, programs, and society over the past 40 years, but one that will continue to help change lives long into the future. He was inducted into the SOBC Hall of Fame in 2016 in recognition of the difference he has made in the lives of so many.

“Our thoughts and sincere condolences are with Howie’s wife Leah and many loved ones.”

Campbell RiverSpecial Olympics