May 24, 1920 – January 15, 2011
Robert D. Freeze passed away peacefully on Saturday, January 15, 2011 at home, with Audrey, his loving partner of twenty-two years, by his side. He was 90 years old. He will be dearly missed by his brother Howard, sister-in-law Annie, and so many people whose lives he inspired. Bob was predeceased by his father Frank Freeze, long time City of Calgary Alderman, mother Clara May Freeze and his brother David.
Bob was born in Calgary on May 24, 1920. He attended Earl Grey School and Western Canada High School. In 1940 he played for the Calgary Bronks the forerunner of the Calgary Stampeders. While attending the University of Alberta he was named outstanding athlete winning the Wilson Trophy for his accomplishments in football and skiing.
In 1942, he joined the army and served as a Lieutenant, where he trained the famous Scottish regiment, the Lovat Scouts. After the war he returned to University, graduated in 1947, and was called to the bar in 1948. He practised law at Fenerty, Fenerty & McGillivray, and in 1954 joined Milt Harradence in the firm Freeze and Harradence where he practised until 1966.
During this time he coached the Calgary Bronks football club into a powerhouse in the 1950’s winning the Alberta Championships twice and going on to win the Western Canadian Championships in 1954. He was President of the Calgary Booster Club in 1959 and 1960, served as President of the Calgary Ski Club in 1961 and 1962. His dedication to fitness and development led to his appointment to the National Advisory Council for Fitness and Amateur Sport in 1963. He was named Calgary Sportsman of the Year in 1965.
Leaving his law practise, he moved to Vancouver where he worked in the family owned Western Union Insurance company running the B.C. operation. He returned to Calgary and became involved as partner and manager of Penny Lane Mall in 1975. He developed a boutique mall with unique stores many of which he operated including the most memorable Canterbury’s Bookshop.
Bob’s lifelong passion and enduring legacy is his commitment to promote and develop youth whether in football, skiing or other sport. He was a coach and mentor to many. He established the Bearberry Biathlon Racing Centre near Sundre in the 1970’s and hosted the North American Championships in 1985. In 1995 he opened Hawk Ridge Cross Country Ski Centre south of Calgary. Hawk Ridge has hosted cross country running races for thousands of students attending Calgary and area schools. It offered cross country ski lessons to young skiers as part of their physical education curriculum and provided a training center for individuals preparing for the provincial and national teams.
Bob was a special human being! He loved excellence and always walked to the beat of his own drum. He believed in giving of himself to the community that gave him so much. In his words, “I’ve had a hell of a life”. His last days were spent at home surrounded by his loved ones, amongst the cross country ski trails he had so enjoyed walking and skiing. A special thank you to those who affectionately cared for Bob during his final days.
A Celebration of Bob’s life will be held at McINNIS & HOLLOWAY’S Park Memorial Chapel (5008 Elbow Drive S.W.) on Sunday, January 23, 2011 at 2:00 p.m. Condolences through www.mcinnisandholloway.com. If friends so desire, memorial donations may be made directly to the Calgary Senior High School Athletic Association, CSHSAA, 3743 Dover Ridge Drive S.E. Calgary, T2B 2E1.
In living memory of Bob Freeze, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES Park Memorial Chapel, 5008 ELBOW DRIVE S.W. Telephone: (403)243-8200Print This Obituary & Condolences