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Bruce Huff ‘dedicated himself to the world of sports’

Bruce Huff ‘dedicated himself to the world of sports’

When Bruce Huff was 19 years old, he turned down an offer to play Class D minor league baseball for $150 a month.

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When Bruce Huff was 19 years old, he turned down an offer to play Class D minor league baseball for $150 a month.

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“I almost went,” he told the Chatham Daily News in 2009. “It would have been a dumb move, I guess. I often wonder what would have happened.”

What did happen for the Morpeth native was a journalism career that lasted more than a half century. He went to World Series and Stanley Cups, Super Bowls and Grey Cups, Indianapolis 500s and Olympic Games.

“Anytime you went to an event like that, it was the best seat in the house,” he said. “I couldn’t complain. It was like Lou Gehrig, he called himself the luckiest man on the face of the earth. That’s how I felt.”

Huff died June 27 in London at 90 years old.

He began writing for his hometown Dresden Times and Dresden News as a teenager. He moved up to the Tillsonburg News and then wrote for the Chatham Daily News from 1954 to ’56.

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Next came nearly 25 years at the London Free Press as a sports reporter, editor and columnist. He moved to the Toronto Sun in 1980 for 14 years and then to the Toronto Star until 1999. He later worked for several years in London as a freelancer.

“Because Bruce had seen it all from the typewriter era, he’d come up with a witty deadline head on a close win, bitter loss, or suggest a better phrase or quote that made your amateur track and field story palatable,” Sun reporter Lance Hornby wrote in a tribute. “But his calming influence competed with the lovable curmudgeon within him, whether gripping about the changing print landscape or putting the dagger in some prima donna’s swagger in the newsroom or on the ball diamond.”

A longtime player in several sports, Huff was inducted to more halls of fame than some superstars he covered.

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He was enshrined in the Canadian Oldtimers Hockey Hall of Fame in 2002, the Ontario Legends of Fastball in 2005, the London Sports Hall of Fame in 2008 and the Dresden Sports Hall of Fame in 2009. He was London’s sportsperson of the year in 2003.

“He dedicated himself to the world of sports by means of the written word and a lifetime of active involvement,” his obituary reads. “Bruce didn’t just report the local sports scene, he lived it.”

His wife of 62 years, Carolyn, died in 2016. They had two sons, Kelly and Tim.

https://torontosun.com/sports/on-the-field-off-the-cuff-bruce-huff-played-a-big-part-in-sun-sports

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