June 13, 2014

Johnny Bower Reflects On His Life

Some amazing quotes here from Johnny Bower, speaking to the Prince Albert Daily Herald about growing up in PA and his life in hockey and World War II:
"Johnny would listen to the Foster Hewitt on the radio every Saturday night so he was as in touch with the NHL as everyone else was. There was no internet or television of course back then so listening to the radio or reading the newspaper was all you had to keep you updated.

"Johnny's talks about his childhood idol, "I loved Boston and their goalie Frank Brimsek growing up. They called him Mr. Zero and I said someday I'm going to be like him and people will call me Mr. Zero!"

"But before his hockey even had even begun, Johnny fought in World War II and was very lucky not to have lost his life overseas.

"He was 15 when he lied about his age to fight for his country. And at the age of 18, he was supposed to be involved in the 1942 invasion of Normandy at the port of Dieppe. A mission that proved to be disastrous as 3400 of the 6000 person infantry were killed or seriously wounded and the rest were taken prisoner.

"I'd been all set to go but a day or two before the raid, nine guys in my company, including myself, got sick with a respiratory infection. They had to take use of the boat and put us in the hospital - we could hardly breathe. I guess if I'd gone, I probably would have lost my life. Most of my friends did."

Here's the full story.

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