Monday, February 23, 2009

Friendly Encounters

This is another in a series of meetings of my friends and celebs.

While doing some autograph research, I came across KC's Hockey Memorabilia, a blog by Kolin Walters, concentrating on signed hockey jerseys and photos. Kolin has other blogs as well, featuring signed hockey sticks, helmets, pucks, baseballs, golf memorabilia, Saskatchewan Roughriders stuff and one devoted to the Hart wrestling family. Each is filled with great stories, pictures and names. Kolin has quite an autograph collection and he is doing a great job showcasing it.
Of course, I couldn't pass up the chance to ask him to share a story on Friendly Encounters. He agreed and told me about meeting Pat Quinn, one of my favorite hockey players from my youth. During his time as coach of the Philadelphia Flyers, Quinn became one of my first autograph successes obtained through the mail.
Kolin's story is a lot more interesting than mine. Without further adieu, here is Kolin's story in his own words.
My wife and I attended the 2006 Telus Skins game in Banff Alberta Canada; a fund raiser for children’s hospitals in the area. The charity event included Jack Nicklaus, John Daly, Greg Norman, Stephen Ames and Sergio Garcia. We had tickets for the two days and spent a few days prior in Calgary.
On the second day, after the practice rounds we walked by the Sponsors tent. The day before, Stephen Ames was signing autographs for ‘Making the Connection’, a heart healthy organization. I was taking pictures of the Cadillac Escalades in the parking lot that were marked for the golfers. I ended up bumping into Jason Zuback’s vehicle; it was clearly marked by the
Alberta plates ‘GOLFZILLIA’.
My wife called me over to a lineup to something. She had no idea who people were waiting for so I walked to the front of the 30 or so people and saw ex-Leafs coach, Pat Quinn signing autographs. I came back and told my wife to get in line; we have to meet this guy. The line moved quickly and within 10 mins, we were in front of Mr. Quinn.
He is a very large man, almost forgetting his days in the NHL as a ‘tough guy’. I told him I had 4 questions for him; he laughed and said, “Sure”. I asked for his autograph, a
handshake, a picture with him and while my wife was taking the picture, I asked if knew where he was going next year. He said, “Not yet” and I wished him the very best of luck and we walked off.
He is a kind and very cordial person. I hope he gets back in the game soon, so he can chase the only one he does not have; the Stanley Cup.
Pat Quinn and Kolin Walters in Alberta, Canada-August 2006.

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