BLAIR, Wren Alvin - It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Wren Alvin Blair of Hillsdale Estates, Oshawa on January 2nd, 2013. Wren was born in Lindsay, Ontario, October 2nd, 1925. Predeceased by his wife Elma (nee Pearce) and his sister Merle Taylor (nee Blair). Son of the late Alvin and Audrey Blair. Will be dearly missed by his daughter Jill Krahule and her husband Peter, his son Dan Blair and wife Libby. Loving Grandpa to Ryan and his wife Christine, Brandon, Laura, Jen and Great-Grandpa to Madison. Survived by his brothers Lyle and Gerald. A caring and devoted father, husband and grandfather, he will be remembered for his generosity and love for his children. Wren was known as "The Bird" in hockey circles and had spent more than 50 years in the sport he loved. He has coached, managed and owned hockey teams in various leagues in North America. His name is linked with success in junior, senior and professional leagues. He was founder and General Manager of the Whitby Dunlops 1957 Allan Cup Champions and 1958 World International Champions. General Manager of the Clinton Comets of the U.S. Eastern League (1958-1971). Wren brought the Oshawa Generals OHA Junior "A" back in 1962. He's the hockey man who discovered Bobby Orr who starred for the Oshawa Generals before joining the Boston Bruins. Coach and General Manager of the Kingston Frontenacs of the Eastern Professional Hockey League (1960-1963). He was the first General Manager (1966-74) and Coach (1967-70) of the Minnesota North Stars of the NHL. Owner of the Saginaw Gears in the International Hockey League (1971-1983) won two Turner Cup Championships. Co-owner of the Pittsburgh Penguins of the NHL (1975-1977). Director of Player Personnel of the Los Angeles Kings of the NHL (1979-1985). Managing Partner and part owner of the Kingston Frontenacs of the OHL (1989-2000). Inducted into the Oshawa Sports Hall of Fame (1986). Inducted into the Whitby Sports Hall of Fame (1998). Inducted into the Saginaw County Sports Hall of Fame (2007). Co-founder of Pinestone Inn Haliburton. Together with Jim Gregory, Wren built Haliburton Hockey Haven Boys Camp in Haliburton. In 2001 Wren was largely instrumental in bringing hockey back to Saginaw, the Saginaw Spirit of the Ontario Hockey League. In that same year Wren proudly wrote his autobiography titled "The Bird" which contained his stories of legendary players like Bobby Orr, Gump Worsley, Bill Goldsworthy, as well as hockey executives. His love of hockey was life long. Visitation will be held at OSHAWA FUNERAL HOME, 847 King Street West (905-721-1234), on Thursday, January 10th from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. A Celebration of Wren's Life will be held in the Chapel on Friday, January 11th at 1 p.m. Memorial donations to the Hospital for Sick Children would be appreciated. Online condolences may be made at www.oshawafuneralhome.com
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Published in the Toronto Star from Jan. 8 to Jan. 9, 2013