Play Hard, Fight Hard now showing at the Military Museums in Calgary

Article / July 11, 2016 / Project number: 2016-07-11-a

By Capt Denny Brown, 3 CDSG Public Affairs

If there were ever two likely organizations to team up for an amazing exhibit, it would be the Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame (CSHOF) and The Military Museums (TMM) to bring us “Play Hard, Fight Hard: Sport in the Canadian Military” running from July 1 to November 13, 2016, in the Founders’ Gallery at the TMM in Calgary.

The brainchild of Rory Cory, Senior Curator, TMM, and Janice Smith, Director, Exhibits and Programming, CSHOF, the exhibit showcases a collection of memorabilia and stories about the relationship between sports and military service.

 “The concept of a combined sports and military display has been bouncing around since 2006,” said Rory Cory.  “So we approached the natural fit, the Canada Sports Hall of Fame, and learned that they were planning a similar virtual exhibit.” 

With more than 100 of the 605 members of the Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame having military service, there is a strong correlation between the values of both worlds. Teamwork, leadership, physical fitness, and tactical and strategic planning are key principles that bring about success to those who learn to wield them with the tenacity of a great athlete and/or key leader.

 'Play Hard, Fight Hard’' shares the values and the stories of our honoured members,” said Janice Smith.   “Teamwork, setting goals for yourself in life, and achieving success in both sports and the military are some of the key points to gather from this exhibit.” 

When asked of their favourite part of the exhibit, Janice and Cory had differing opinions:

 “The story of Mark Fuchko, a double amputee, is one of the most interesting stories in our exhibit,” said Cory.   “The display with his broken sledge hockey stick and his scorched ISAF patch tell the story of his sacrifice to military duty; and his rehabilitation, with the help of sports.”  “

 “The Canadian Football Jersey from the 1944 Tea Bowl match between Canada and the United States, during the Second World War, is one of my favourites,”  said Janice.   “Played on February 13th, 1944, in England, the teams played the first half with American rules and the second half with Canadian rules, and led to a strong Canadian victory.” 

To see all of the spectacular displays, head on down to The Military Museums in Calgary and catch all of the action of sports in the military. You have to see it to believe it.

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