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Headline News___________
Canadian Sports World Mourns The Loss Of Curling Icon Garnet Campbell
Monday, January 02, 2012 -
Garnet Campbell
 Garnet Campbell

The world of Canadian sports has lost a Legend. Wm. Garnet Campbell, famous ďLittle GeneralĒ of the Campbell Curling Clan of Avonlea, Saskatchewan, died peacefully on Dec. 30th in Okotoks, AB, 12 days before his 85th birthday.


Campbell was a finalist in an astonishing 25 Provincial, 6 Western Canadian & 16 National Curling Championships over a 38 year period, winning 18, 4 and 3 titles respectively.

i)               Along with his father, Sandy, and brothers - Lloyd, Glen, Don & Gordon, Garnet Campbell won four Provincial Menís and one National Menís Brier Championship, going undefeated at the 1955 Brier in Regina (breaking all previous Brier attendance records).

ii)              The Campbell family won 24 Purple Hearts, emblematic of Provincial Menís curling winners.

iii)             Along with teammates, brother Glen, Bob Pickering, Jack Keys, Gary Ford & Jim Thomas, Garnet made six more National Brier appearances, making the small-town (300 citizen) Avonlea Curling Club the winningest curling club in Canada. (The brothers were minority share owners of the Avonlea Curling Club of Scarborough, which also won Briers skipped by Ed Werenich)

iv)             Garnet won 6 car spiels, and after the family won 2 spiels in 1950 (Nipawin & Rosetown), they donated a car toward the building of a new 3 sheet curling rink in Avonlea (completed in 1951).

v)              In addition to his 10 Brier appearances, Garnet was runner-up in 6 Menís Provincials. With wife, DeVerne, he won two Provincial Mixed titles. With brother Gordon, he won 6 Provincial & 4 Western Canadian Masters titles.


Halls of Fame:

i)              In 1967, Garnet, Don, Glen & Lloyd Campbell were inducted into the SASK Sports Hall of Fame.

ii)             In 1974 Garnet, Glen, & Bob Pickering were inducted into the Canadian Curling Hall of Fame.


The Campbell Brothers intense love for team sports spread throughout the Family:


i)               In curling, Garnetís children won Provincial curling titles - his son Vern won a SK Provincial High School Championship; Vern and sister, Cassandra, won a SK High School Mixed Championship. Garnetís sister, Margaret and her daughter Cynthia, won the US Womenís Curling Championship; Lloydís daughter Erin won a SK Junior Womenís title; and Glenís son Doug won an AB 55+ Senior Mixed title.

ii)              In baseball, Garnet (short-stop & centre fielder, with .333 batting average), Glen (catcher), Don & Gordon (pitchers), led the Avonlea Arrows to championships over the ďbig leaguersĒ in Weyburn, Notre Dame, Moose Jaw & Regina. Gordon was named SK Southern League MVP & winner of Scotty Melville Award as top pitcher from 1953-54-55.  

iii)              In hockey, Garnet played left wing on a line centred by brother Gordon, with brother Glen on right wing; 3 Forer brothers on the 2nd line; & Garnet backed up older brother Don in goal. They won the Southern SK Amateur Hockey title. In 1945 Garnet made the prestigious Moose Jaw Canucks, where he was back-up goalie to future NHLers Bev Bentley and Emil Francis in 1945-46.

iv)             In golf: Garnetís thirst for self-improvement and sports excellence were further demonstrated as he played golf up to 5 times per week at Avonleaís Long Creek course each summer and in Westbrook Village (Phoenix) over the past 15 winters.


Campbell is survived by his wife of 47 years, DeVerne, his daughter Cassandra, son Vern (wife Tammy) & grandchildren Burjess, Kiana, & Ali). He is also survived by 3 siblings, brothers Lloyd, 97 (Regina) and Gordon, 87 (Avonlea), and sister Margaret (Archie Smith, Boulder, Colorado), as well as 20 nieces & nephews. Garnet was predeceased by his parents, A.N. (Sandy) Campbell, & Eva Miller Campbell; his eldest sister, Verna (Bill) Evans, his brothers Glen (Fern), & Donald (Grace).


Cremation will occur in Okotoks. The celebration of Garnetís life will be deferred until this Spring where his ashes will be dispersed at the Campbell Family homestead at Avonlea, SK.


Donations in Garnetís name may be made to the Canadian Cancer Society or to the Saskatchewan Curling Association Sport Legacy Fund, where cheques may be made payable to the National Sport Trust Fund and forwarded to SCA, 613 Park St., Regina, SK S4N 5N1.

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