Don Brown, 84, on Dec. 18. Brown had a 53-year broadcasting career, mostly with CBC Sports, producing and/or directing seven Summer Olympics, five Winter Olympics, seven Commonwealth Games and two Pan Am Games. He also worked on 17 seasons of Hockey Night in Canada and behind-the-scenes on seven seasons of Montreal Expos baseball broadcasts. Brown was also a vocal advocate of broadcast support for the Canada Games in the event’s early years. He was inducted into the CBC Sports Hall of Fame in 2010 and awarded the Queen’s Jubilee Medal in 2013.
Walter Cownden, 99, on Dec. 20. Cownden served in the Royal Canadian Navy aboard the destroyer HMCS Restigouche during WWII. He left the Navy in 1947 and went to study at the Lorne Greene Academy of Radio Arts. He returned to Victoria to work as an announcer at CJVI Victoria, later joining CFAX Victoria as production manager, and CKDA/CFMS-FM where he rose through the ranks to vice-president.
Peter Head, 82. Originally from Regina, Head started his broadcast career at CFRB Toronto where he hosted a recreational show called “Ask Peter Head.” He later moved over to CKVR-TV, hosting sports program “HeadStart.” After leaving media, he went on to work for Ontario Tourism and finally director of communications for Metro Toronto and Regional Conservation Authority from 1975, until his retirement in 1991.
Robert Frederick, 70, on Dec. 10. A graduate of the University of British Columbia, Frederick also received a Master of Fine Arts from New York University before joining the CBC in 1979. He started as a producer on the series Ritter’s Cove that followed the adventures of a family air taxi service that used a DHC-2 Beaver seaplane. He went on to direct 90 episodes of The Beachcombers before moving over to Paramount Pictures to produce 108 episodes of MacGyver. He later established his own production company MVP Entertainment Inc. It developed France-Canada co-production “Lifeline” and independent feature “The Wild Guys” among other projects.
Broadcast Dialogue has compiled our Sign Offs columns from 2019 in tribute to the radio, TV, film and entertainment industry professionals we lost over the last year. Read more here.
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