Six goalies who left their stamp on the game can now be found in your mailbox.
Canada Post unveiled their Great Canadian Goalie stamps on Thursday night. The limited edition stamps feature Bernie Parent, Johnny Bower, Lorne “Gump” Worsley, Tony Esposito, Ken Dryden, and Martin Brodeur. All living honourees were in attendance except for Brodeur, who is in St. Louis working for the Blues. Worsley, who passed away in 2007 at the age of 77, was represented by his family.
Each honouree spoke at the podium and each had something funny to say.
Philadelphia Flyers great Bernie Parent said he was playing golf when the Flyers drafted him. When his friend told him he had been drafted, Parent asked where Philadelphia was.
Tony Esposito thanked his wife for putting up with his notorious grumpiness on game days.
Ken Dryden joked, “What we did, others said was crazy. That we were crazy. But others are defencemen or forwards, and what do they know?”
I managed to speak to Johnny Bower one-on-one for a few moments. He said he never thought he would be on a stamp.
“I had one ambition and that was to win the Stanley Cup,” Bower said. “That was a dream come true to me. It was a great honour when they told me. Johnny Bower on stamps? I couldn’t believe it.”
Bower, who will turn 91 on November 8th, has won the Stanley Cup, the Vezina Trophy, is a Hockey Hall of Fame inductee, and now has his own stamp. I asked him if there was anything else he still wanted to accomplish.
“No,” he said. “The only thing I wished really is that my dear friend Gump Worsley was here.
“I roomed with him and he was funny. We didn’t win the Cup that year or anything like that, so he says ‘John, what are you gonna do?’ I said ‘I’m gonna move back home.’ He says ‘Why don’t you come with me?’ So I say ‘OK I’ll come with you. What are we gonna do?’ He says ‘We’re gonna rob a bank!’ That’s the kind of comical guy he was.”
You can order your own stamps from the Great Canadian Goalies collection here.