Some tears but some smiles and laughter as well last week, as friends and visiting family of former Fort St. John Senior Flyers great Jim Anderson shared their memories at a gathering Aug. 29.
“It’s just hard to believe that the years go by so fast,” said an emotional Gary Alexander, remembering his former teammate.
“He was everybody’s friend. He liked to tease. He was comical and he was serious. He was a great teammate. Nobody worked harder. Everybody loved Jim.”
Gary actually met Jim first as a youngster. He would later get to share the ice with the local legend.
“My dad worked at the arena when we were kids, so we grew up idolizing him.”
Current general manager Paul van Nostrand called Anderson “the greatest scorer in FSJ Flyers history” in announcing the news of Jim’s passing.
During his time with the club, Anderson tallied 516 goals and 432 helpers, even earning an invitation to try out for Canada’s national team in 1966.
“A bittersweet day,” said van Nostrand when asked to share his feelings of Anderson.
“I didn’t know him early on other than his history with the Flyers. I do have fond memories in his later years of us hanging his banner at the North Peace Arena during the 2010 Allan Cup. I got to know Jim and Audrey fairly well during that time. They lived right across from me in Cedar Village.”
“It’s a sad day but a lot of good memories being shared here today.”
Andre Larmand remembered his old friend fondly too.
“Probably the best person in the world to play with. Everybody got the easiest goals ever. When he was around, he did some amazing things. I played with Jimmy for 12 years. He was an all-around good hockey player.”
While mostly linked with hockey, he also had a presence in the curling and golfing community as well.
Colin Griffith played on a curling team with Anderson for nearly five years.
“We competed in senior curling and cash spiels. It was a wonderful time. He wasn’t just a great teammate, he was a great athlete. A good soul. He was so loyal to everybody on the team and an excellent sport,” Griffith said.
“He was probably one of the most humble people you could ever meet.”
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