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Echoes in the Rink: The Willie O'Ree Story

Wednesday, 10.17.2007 / 12:12 PM / NHL Community

NHL.com

New Brunswick Filmmakers' Co-operative
Produced by Errol Williams, Chris Campbell and Tony Merzetti

In the Montreal Forum, on January 18, 1958, Fredericton native Willie O'Ree made history. When the Boston Bruins faced off against the Canadiens, O'Ree was in the Bruins lineup, the first black man ever to play in the NHL.

Echoes in the Rink is a compelling film portrait of Willie O'Ree. Along with behind-the-scenes interviews with Bruins players, Echoes in the Rink features archival film footage of O'Ree on ice and talking with TV commentators. It even includes home movies of young Willie practicing for the NHL on a backyard rink and at a local arena.

Willie O'Ree played in two Bruins games in 1958, and 43 more in the 1960-61 season. Superficially, his career was standard for the hundred-odd players in the six-team NHL: Senior A, junior hockey, two seasons with the Bruins, and 13 more years in the Western Hockey League.

Willie O'Ree's 21 year pro career ended in San Diego, where he still lives. Almost 50 years ago, he blazed a solitary path into the NHL; today he is a hero and role model, working with the NHL to enable children with diverse backgrounds to develop their talents fully, on ice and off.

ISBN 0-9683126-0-8 / $19.95 (Canadian)
Available / VHS / 26 min.

New Brunswick Filmmakers' Co-operative
P.O. Box 1537
Fredericton, NB E3B 4Y1
Canada
Phone: 506-455-1632
Fax: 506-457-2006
nbfilmco-op@brunnet.net
Quote of the Day

Your team is going to want to recapture the feeling. What they're going to have to figure out is they're going to have to rewrite the story. Because you're going to rewrite the story doesn't mean you want a different end. It's just that you're going to have to learn that there's different challenges to get there, and if you're going to try and tap the same feeling, it ain't going to happen.

— Los Angeles Kings general manager Dean Lombardi on maintaining their success from last season