- Town Hall
Milton has a rich sports history; many elite-level athletes were born, grew up or have moved into Milton. With encouragement from the Town of Milton, a group of local residents have come together to formally recognize its top athletes, teams, and sports advocates and supporters via the creation of The Milton Sports Hall of Fame, which will pay tribute to those who have brought us so much excitement and pride.
The Milton Sports Hall of Fame will provide an opportunity to recognize, honour and preserve the sports accomplishments and contributions of our community.
Now accepting nominations for Class of 2017. Application deadline is May 31, 2017.
Ed Whitlock (Running) (1931 - 1917)
Known for his wispy white hair and daily training runs along the path of Evergreen Cemetery -- a stone's throw away from his home -- the England-born Canadian long-distance star first ran as a teenager and took up the sport again in his 40's, running his first marathon at 46 years of age.
A superstar on the International Masters racing scene, he was the first and only person age 70 or older to ever run a marathon in under three hours -- having done so three times (2:59:10 at age 72, 2:54.48 at 73 and 2:58.40 at 74).
In his mid-80's, despite on-again, off-again knee problems, the Masters running wonder continued to set new age-class world records with nearly as much frequency as when he began doing so four decades ago. Those records include the 1500m, mile, 5km, 10km - road, 10km - track, half marathon and marathon, many of which have been downright decimated. In October 2016 Ed was the first man age 85 or older to run a marathon in under 4 hours (3:56:38).
All of that success came without any specialized training or diet. "I'm really quite non-scientific with all of this stuff. I basically eat what I want to eat, and my wife says she can't understand why I'm so thin when I eat so much" said Whitlock.
His racing exploits have been profiled in running publications worldwide, and while quite humble about his world-class status, he was always willing to talk about his passion for the sport. There's no doubt that down to earth attitude factored into the rock-star like reception he received at events across the Greater Toronto Area and beyond, whether serving as a competitor or ambassador.
Scott Hogarth (Martial Arts)
|As part of his 2014 induction into the Martial Arts Masters Hall of Fame, Hanshi Scott Hogarth received a commemorative t-shirt which reminds one of the touring schedule found on the back of many music bands' T's. The prestige is fitting for someone who enjoys rock star caliber treatment whenever he visits Texas, the North American hot-bed for martial arts.
Scott is an 11-time World Champion, having secured back-to-back titles in 1992 and 1993 and has a black belt in seven different forms of martial arts.
Hogarth has been running his Fighting Griffin Martial Arts Club for more than 35 years with wife and fellow martial arts Master Tammy, focusing on traditional Okinawan Go Ju Ryu Karate and Hapkijitsu. He has also taught thousands of students via introductory training sessions with the Halton District School Board.
"I have never met a more knowledgeable, inspiring and patient martial artist, instructor and coach" says Shane Finigan, a 25 year veteran of martial arts.
His martial arts prowess and unique look have also given him the opportunity to be part of 10 action movies as an actor, stuntman and fight choreographer. Among those he's worked with is industry icon Billy Blanks.
Over the years Hanshi Scott has received numerous awards, too many to mention. Most notably are his Masters Hall of Fame Golden Lifetime Achievement Award and the Sport Karate Museum Dragon Image Fighting Award.
His contribution to the sporting world of karate extends well beyond Halton Region. Scott was instrumental in helping establish international competition rules and refereeing point systems, still used in competition around the world to date.
Having studied in Okinawa, Japan his adopted homeland, Hogarth is part of a martial arts lineage that dates back to the mid-1800s. His long-time instructor and father figure, Toyama Zenshu, has suggested that one day students from the far east will be coming to Milton to seek out his expertise.
John Tonelli (Hockey)
As an accomplished professional hockey player, John Tonelli is synonymous with the Town of Milton; he even has a local arena named in his honour.
John loved to play hockey from a very young age, playing on their backyard rink and in the Milton Minor Hockey system. He was part of the Bantam team that won the 1971 Ontario Championship and two years later was drafted by the Toronto Marlboros to play in the Ontario Hockey League.
Following a three-year run with the World Hockey Association's Houston Aeros, Tonelli started his NHL career in 1978 with the New York Islanders.
Affectionately dubbed 'The Greasy Jet' by his teammates, John was known for scoring clutch goals during the playoffs and being tough to beat in the corners.
His stellar 17-year professional career was highlighted with four consecutive Stanley Cup championship wins with the New York Islanders and a pair of NHL All-Star nods in 1982 and 1985.
He had nine 20 or more goal seasons in the NHL, including a career high 42 goal, 100 point campaign with New York in 1984-85.
Following his successful stretch on Long Island, John went on to be a standout left winger with the Calgary Flames and Los Angeles Kings. Tonelli capped off his NHL career with 325 goals and 511 assists for 836 points in 1028 regular season games. He would also go on to score 40 goals and 75 assists for 115 points in 172 playoff games.
John's success extended to international play, as evidenced in the 1984 Canada Cup. He had 9 points, including an assist to Mike Bossy's game winning goal in overtime of the semi-final game and was named the tournament's best player, winning the 1984 Canada Cup MVP award.
Tonelli has the distinction of being the only player in history to score a regular season goal on an assist by Gordie Howe and another regular season goal on an assist by Wayne Gretzky.
Carole Murray (Swimming)
When longtime Miltonians think back on their town's swimming history, one name comes immediately to mind, Carole Murray.
For many, that sparks some fond memories.
Enjoying a strong connection to children, 'Coach Carole' always seemed to bring out ones inner swimmer -- even the most timid or doubtful at the pool. The result has been thousands, literally, of Miltonians not only learning the basics of swimming but additional life skills such as time management, perseverance, dedication and the value of self-confidence.
In 1974, already busy teaching lessons at her home indoor pool, Carole became the head coach of the Milton Swim Team. Murray had 20 students for that first session at the Ontario School for the Deaf High School and 120 by years end.
For the next 35 years Murray would spend her days at the pool - first at the Ontario School for the Deaf High School and later at her own Bronte Street facility.
Under Murray's leadership, the Milton Swim team would enjoy plenty of success, including winning the Bell Canada championship trophy three years in a row.
"Mrs. Murray always knew what her swimmers were capable of and she always set us up for success" said former swimmer Joanne (Hopkins) Christensen.
The team would also participate in an exchange with swimmers from Barbados, giving the athletes an opportunity to compete with another country.
In 1985 Murray also established and coached the Milton Masters squad, who thrived at national and international competition.
Her strong sense of community saw her raise funds for such organizations as the Heart & Stroke Foundation in 1982 and the local hospital expansion in 1984, with her young athletes committing to an incredible 10,000 lap swim-a-thon.
Carole's dedication to amateur sport and leadership earned her the "Coach of the Year 1988" medal during the 1988 Calgary Olympics.
Campbellville Merchants Intermediate Baseball Team
They never graced the cover of Sports Illustrated or made it onto TV, but the Campbellville Merchants Intermediate Men's Baseball clubs enjoyed a championship heyday that rivals that of any team -- in any sport, at any level.
During Len Andrews' 16 year run as Manager (1952-67), the Merchants captured an astounding 12 Ontario titles and claimed the Halton County crown 11 times in a row. They amassed an overall record of 411-122-16 during that dynasty.
The teams were made up almost entirely of local players from the village of approximately 250 people and galvanized a community like few fans of today can possibly imagine.
On any given weekend, the old Campbellville ball park was the place to be, drawing upwards of a thousand fans from rural Milton and surrounding Hamlets for most games.
Come playoff time attendance was even higher. The team was also supported by a sizable fan base that would travel across Ontario to see their beloved Campbellville Merchants. They were 'the' team that all opposing teams wanted to beat, making for an always entertaining game.
"One of the things I remember most is how on the road trips we'd have a convoy of fans following us up," said long-time player Ken Moore.
From 1969-1984 the club would go on to win three more Provincial Championships, two County titles and five second place finishes.
In 2014 the Merchants (1952-1967 Era) were the second team to ever be inducted into Baseball Ontario's Hall of Fame. Their lengthy list of accomplishments would suggest there's also a place for them in the Canadian Baseball Sports Hall of Fame.
The Merchants' exploits have been chronicled in 'The Village Nine", a collection of newspaper articles and photographs collected by the late Len Andrews that recounts the team's legacy.