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

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

As Nelson hotels close, some try to stay open without guests

Vacancies are there, even for people who need to self-isolate

Nelson and COVID-19: everything you need to know

Check this page for every local story related to the outbreak

Nelson police make drug bust in Railtown

Drugs, weapons and stolen property were among the items found

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

Education, not enforcement: B.C. bylaw officers keeping a watch on physical distancing

A kind word, it turns out, has usually been all people need to hear

B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Province holding about 40% of beds empty for peak still to come

As 500K+ apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

Wearing non-medical masks can stop spread of COVID-19 before symptoms start: Tam

Health officials had previously not recommended wearing them

UPDATE: UK PM Boris Johnson moved to intensive care after COVID-19 symptoms worse

He has been quarantined in his Downing St. residence since being diagnosed with COVID-19 on March 26

Travellers, travel agents ‘in agony’ over refund policies and customer service

Many Canadian carriers are offering customers flights rebookings or travel vouchers — but not refunds

Introverted and extroverted kids likely to react differently to COVID-19 restrictions

B.C. child psychologist says your parenting approach can’t be one-size fits all in social isolation

B.C. begins taking submissions for $2M COVID-19 research fund

Rural health, impact of shifting hospital resources among priorities

Easter Bunny not a COVID-19 carrier, allowed to do drop offs

World Health Organization grants permission to Bunny as he cannot transfer the virus

Most Read