A Train Carrying The Canadiens….

I feel quite safe in saying that when hockey fans everywhere heard the news that the plane carrying Yaroslavl Lokomitiv had gone down, there were immediate thoughts about their own teams. Losing the Montreal Canadiens for example…. I have no words.

Shockingly, there was a moment in time when we almost did lose the Montreal Canadiens, but it wasn’t from a plane crash. Instead, it was from a train almost plunging into an icy river. And we’re talking the Rocket and Doug and Butch and Elmer and some mighty fine teammates.

The Canadiens had fallen to the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-1 in Toronto on December 20, 1950, and hours later were heading back to Montreal. Just 35 miles from the city, in the morning, the train began to cross the Dorion bridge high above the St. Lawrence River, but a cracked wheel bearing caused the baggage car to hop the rails. Quickly the next four cars also left the track, and I remember reading once that members of the Canadiens moved to one side of their car to try and keep it from tipping.

Finally, after a few harrowing moments, the rest of the train, with the Canadiens on it, managed to hug the ties and make it across. Barely.

Several passengers were injured although all of the Canadiens players were fine, and everyone was brought back to Montreal by another train and some buses.

But it was as close as can be to losing the entire Montreal Canadiens when their train came within a whisker of hurtling into the cold St. Lawrence below.

Is this a gruesome story or what?






8 thoughts on “A Train Carrying The Canadiens….”

  1. This is a morbid story but one day I was walking around with my grandfather in the Eastern Townships and we walked by a railway bridge and under that bridge, far below, was a lake. He told me that in that lake there were a few rail cars. He said that the train derailed and a few cars went into the water…with people in it.

    I never forgot that. You never know what can happen on any given day. It’s a scary thought but it can happen.

    Those poor people on that plane had no clue was going to happen. That’s why all this petty stuff we people do should end, because in the long run it’s not worth it. Sadly, none of us really learn this lesson and we continue on doing the same old stuff.

  2. I don’t think the hockey gods love us anymore. Considering how Boston won the Cup last year after all they did? Ugh. Maybe god-willing the team goes down the drain this season!

  3. Darth, the Bruins were a one-hit wonder and completely unlikeable in doing so. Now it’s time to have a real hockey team hoist the Cup. This is going to be our year and you’re going to be lucky to be living in the city when it happens.

  4. Hockey would not be the same if the Canadiens were lost. Without the Canadiens and especially Richard, Quebec would have been drastically different. Hell Canada would be completely different now.

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