William Harrison, known commonly as “Skeets,” was a pillar of the local hockey community who has dedicated countless hours of service to the game in our region.
Harrison was born on June 16, 1925 in Windsor.
Known as a “man for all sports,” Harrison received frequent accolades as a fine amateur athlete in his own right. Harrison played football, hockey, lacrosse, softball, and golf to a high level as a young man.
Harrison was an accomplished hockey referee who officiated for several years at the minor, high school, university, Junior “B,” and Senior Levels. Most notably, he enjoyed a long spell in the International Hockey League, where he refereed several Turner Cup championship games between 1963 and ’74.
Harrison also coached and organized hockey at multiple levels. He was both Coach and General Manager of the Junior “B” Windsor Royals and Windsor Bulldogs from 1977 to ’90. During Harrison’s spell in charge, his teams set a record by capturing three consecutive league crowns.
Harrison was honoured with an Ontario Premier’s Award from William Davis in 1974, and the Detroit Red Wings organization has recognized him for his dedication to the USA Hockey program.
Harrison is the 1974 Kinsman Sportsman of the Year. During his impressive career, he also won the 1980 Labatt’s Appreciation Award (for outstanding contributions to the Windsor Hockey Referees’ Association), the 1987 Kelly Ahearn Long-Time Voluntary Service Award (for his work in the Western Junior “B” League), the OHA Golden Stick Order of Merit (for outstanding service to the game by a non-player for a period of not less than ten years), and a 2006 WESPY Legacy Award.
Today, he is featured in a mural at Windsor Arena that honours 14 of our area’s prominent local sports personalities.