Gord Downie, the poetic frontman of The Tragically Hip, passed away Tuesday night after a well-documented battle with brain cancer.
The Tragically Hip, from Kingston, Ontario, are as iconic in this nation as the sport of hockey itself. Canada’s national winter sport is prevalent in many of the band’s lyrics. Arguably, the band’s most notable hockey song is “Fifty Mission Cap” from their 1992 release Fully Completely, a tribute to 1951 Stanley Cup hero Bill Barilko of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Other hockey references from The Tragically Hip are included in songs such as “Fireworks” (in honour of Paul Henderson and Team Canada 1972) and “At the Lonely End of the Rink”.
Downie’s godfather is Harry Sinden, the long-time executive with the Boston Bruins and honoured member of the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Downie, 53, was remembered fondly on Twitter by his legion of fans, especially those in the hockey community.
Condolences to the family and friends of Canadian music icon Gord Downie, whose music and love for hockey will echo through arenas forever. pic.twitter.com/4cxlvsXdGe
— NHL (@NHL) October 18, 2017
Heartbroken today. Few Canadians touched this country like Gord Downie. Thank you for everything you gave us. My deepest condolences. pic.twitter.com/00DdU6IVZn
— Doug Gilmour (@DougGilmour93) October 18, 2017
Tragically Hip 2002-02-23 – University of Utah Salt Lake City A shout out to The Hip and amazing teammates from 2002 https://t.co/HC5yoJJKmJ
— Cassie Campbell-Pascall (@CassieCampbell) October 18, 2017
— Hockey Night in Canada (@hockeynight) October 18, 2017
Thank you for the music that fuelled Canada’s game in hockey rinks and communities from coast to coast to coast. RIP Gord Downie. 🇨🇦🎶🏒⭐️ https://t.co/t2AePyXn7Z
— Hockey Canada (@HockeyCanada) October 18, 2017
— Brian McGrattan (@bigern10) October 18, 2017
— Leafs Lunch (@LeafsLunch1050) October 18, 2017
RIP Gord Downie. One of the best 🇨🇦🎤
— Ryan Strome (@strome18) October 18, 2017
RIP Gord. Tough to find someone who represented Canada as much as you. Sad day for Canadians
— Matt Duchene (@Matt9Duchene) October 18, 2017
In 2016, Rob wrote “Hockey’s Enforcers: A Dying Breed”, now available at Chapters and Indigo stores everywhere.