Canadian alpine alumni were in Nelson on Saturday to induct Bob Swan into the Canadian Ski Hall of Fame. Former teammate Emily (Beauchamp) Ringheim, who passed away the same day, was also remembered. L-R back row: Currie Chapman, Dan Irwin, Peter Duncan, Keith Shepherd, Bertie Irwin, Dan Hadley. Front row: Peter W. Webster, Barbie Walker, Nancy Greene Raine, Bob Swan, Steph Townsend, Judy Leinweber, John Ritchie. Photo: Tyler Harper

Nelson’s Bob Swan inducted into Canadian Ski Hall of Fame

Swan was feted at an event Saturday

Currie Chapman was driving with his sister when the pair spotted Bob Swan on a sidewalk. They weren’t yet teammates, but Chapman knew all about Swan.

The only thing his sister knew, however, was that Swan appeared to walk like a duck.

“Oh my god,” she said. “He’s not very co-ordinated.”

“Yeah,” Chapman replied. “But those skis straighten those feet out and man does he go then.”

Swan and Chapman both grew up in Chelsea, Que., and were later teammates on Canada’s first national alpine team that was based in Nelson. On Saturday, several members of that original team including Chapman and Nancy Greene Raine were in town to induct Swan into the Canadian Ski Hall of Fame.

Swan, a member of the team from 1963 to 1969, competed for Canada in the 1964 and 1968 Winter Games. He said he was stunned to be included among the sport’s greatest athletes.

“How did I deserve that? There must be quite a few people who think I’m worthy,” he said. “I think of my results and think they weren’t that bad. I didn’t win a lot but it was close and I had a pretty good career.”

Related: Bobby Swan can still fly

Swan remains a competitor on the masters circuit and a regular at Whitewater Ski Resort. Troy Trillo and Whitewater Ski Team coach Dylan Henderson did the work to get Swan considered for the induction, while Chapman and former national team coach Dave Jacobs nominated Swan.

“[Swan] was a role model for me,” said Chapman. “His passion would keep you going, and that’s what he’s always had, unbelievable passion for the sport. One discipline. He didn’t like downhill much, he liked [giant slalom], but slalom was his specialty. If you think about it now, almost everyone specializes in ski racing. Swabber was one of the first.”

Greene Raine pointed out what anyone who has seen Swan ski still knows — even in his mid-70s, Swan hasn’t lost his speed.

“You might not have had many wins but I’m willing to bet you could beat any of us here today,” Greene Raine said to Swan.

The event at the Adventure Hotel felt like a reunion between friends who just happened to be Canada’s ski pioneers. It was also bittersweet — Emily (Beauchamp) Ringheim, who also competed on the team, passed away the same day of the dinner.

Swan will be formally inducted into the Hall of Fame on Nov. 21 in Banff, Alta., along with athletes Thomas Grandi and John Kucera, nordic coach Marty Hall and builders John Fry and Russell Goodman.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Nelson parking ticket amnesty nets $63,000

City says 71 per cent of participants paid one or two tickets, and the remainder paid more than two

Why film photography is less work (and more fun) than digital

A conversation with Nelson photographers Fred Rosenberg and Thomas Nowaczynski

Peewee Leafs win gold in Trail

Nelson overcame seven other teams to win the tournament

Selkirk College students protest proposed tuition increases

Sudents’ union says this year’s 2 per cent increase puts education out of reach for some

Nelson project funds rural schools in Nepal

Mountain trekker David Swain runs the Altitude Project

New Canada Food Guide nixes portion sizes, promotes plant-based proteins

Guide no longer lists milk and dairy products as a distinct food group

Judge annuls hairdresser’s forced marriage to boss’ relative

Woman was told she’d be fired if she didn’t marry boss’s Indian relative so he could immigrate here

Liberals look to make home-buying more affordable for millennials: Morneau

Housing is expected to be a prominent campaign issue ahead of October’s federal election

Cannabis-carrying border crossers could be hit with fines under coming system

Penalties are slated to be in place some time next year

Man accused of threatening to kill ‘as many girls as I see’

Christopher W. Cleary wrote he was angry because he’d never had a girlfriend and wanted to ‘make it right’ with a mass shooting

Canadian talent abound on newly revamped Vancouver Whitecaps squad

Lineup is full of new faces after the organization parted ways with 18 players over the off-season

B.C. Green leader calls for long-term legislature financial audit

Andrew Weaver says trust in clerk and sergeant at arms is gone

No charges in fatal police Taser incident in B.C.

RCMP watchdog concludes no evidence of excessive or disproportionate force was used by officers

Most Read