OBITUARY OF Bill Good Sr.
A prairie sportswriter once
referred to Bill Good Sr. as ``that walking cathedral.'' That's not bad. To all
us shorties, Good towered
like the cathedral at
It's not too much of a stretch to
suggest that, in the '40s, '50s and '60s, Lorne Greene and Good had the most
recognizable voices in
For decades, his cello-section voice rolled into every city and village in every province that had a four-sheet rink and a CBC relay. When it was too warm to curl, he covered the Canadian Open Golf Championship, not as part of a stationary team sitting up in a tower, but walking the course with a 100-pound power pack strapped to his back.
That voice was stilled Tuesday
when Good died in
He left behind a hefty set of
credentials: memberships in the
The last 10 years had been a rough
patch for the big guy from
I knew him for almost 40 years, took road-trips, walks and a hundred coffee breaks with him, listening to that voice. Walking down the streets of small Interior towns, it was never a surprise when people stopped him and said, wonderingly, ``That voice! You're Bill Good, aren't you?'' He loved it. In the bad old days of the B.C. Lions, he habitually kicked off his post-game broadcast by demanding, ``There's only one thing I want to know: Are the Bombers that good or are we that bad?''
Prior to his hospitalization, Good still walked the West Vancouver sea wall, trailing his portable oxygen bottle, had a permanent chair at what was called the Senate Table at B.C. Place football games, with veteran colleagues Jim Coleman, Jim Kearney and Jim Cox.
The magisterial voice was the mark of his radio career, his hands were the mark of a working newspaperman. All those years of pounding stiff typewriter keys in frigid rinks had popped the knuckles of both hands. He told me once, ``I'd shake hands with you, but we'd have to call in a plumber to get untangled.''
So now he is gone, a great broadcaster, a Canadian original, devoted family man, a friend to those who needed a friend. I'm tempted to say the bells of St. Bill have been stilled. But I just know I'd hear a rasping voice, asking, ``Was I that good, or are you that bad a writer?''