About the `72 Book
The Goal that United Canada, 72 Amazing Stories by Canadians from Coast to Coast
A moment in time.
It’s rare for a person to remember exactly where he or she was at a single moment in time, some four decades past. It’s rarer still for an entire nation to hold acollective memory of such a moment. This kind of hardwired retention usually results from group trauma — the shock of assassination, large scale tragedy, or natural disaster.
Occasionally, the event that galvanizes a population is a happy one. Such was the case when Paul Henderson scored the memorable goal in ’72, that won the game and united Canada.
This book contains 72 stories that revolve around the ’72 Summit Series between Canada and the Soviet Union. Viewed separately, they are very personal, even intimate in nature. When they are strung together they begin to tell a larger story, a uniquely Canadian story of love for our country and its game.
The Summit Series becomes the focal point for Canadians to express themselves. Their comments are sometimes funny, sometimes poignant, often passionate, and always engaging.Some saw heroism, some patriotism, some a kind of coming-of-age for Canada. Some saw or heard Game Eight from the tops of telephone poles, others in coal cars
or cardiac care units.Some were lucky enough to see games in person, either in Canada or Moscow. But the physical vantage point didn’t matter as much as the viewpoint
they brought to the event and the one they came away with. It’s a diversity of thought and opinion that reflects the best of who we are as a people.
“It was the greatest tournament ever
played in sports. There’s no doubt in my
mind about that.” — Don Cherry
“We sang Oh Canada. I started to leave
the arena, only to see a young Russian
boy in tears with his mother trying to
console him. I wanted to stop, and try to
explain – but I couldn’t. We were worlds
apart.” — Jim Herder
“That didn’t even come to my mind –
that I was a descendant of the Russians.
I never ever thought of it. It was just
‘I’m a Canadian and we won! We beat
the Russians.’ Absolutely no mixed
allegiances!” — Walter Gretzky
“…you could pretty well point to anyone
across the country and you knew they
were all watching the same thing.
That doesn’t happen very often in our
country, as big as we are and as diverse
as we are. But on that day, they were,
and whether it was in a little school
in Winnipeg or somewhere else in the
country you knew it was that kind of
feeling.” — Peter Mansbridge
One of the many aspects of the ’72 Project that inspires me is that there is a generation of Canadians that have a collective memory of an event or period …
It’s rare in a country’s history that people can recall exactly where they were and what it meant to them when an event occurs. Sometimes those recollections occur during tragedies, …