Regarded by the vast majority of the individuals who saw him perform as the greatest natural athlete the province has ever produced, Jack Canning had a varied and outstanding athletic career that earned him almost automatic election to the Newfoundland and Labrador Sports Hall of Fame.
During the early 1900’s, Jack Canning played every sport that was available in the St. John’s area and played them all with amazing ability, exceptional success and very evident leadership for every team of which he was a member.
Jack Canning was a member of four Terra Nova hockey teams that won the Boyle Trophy and the St. John’s championship. He received a medal for throwing a cricket ball a record 343 feet, ten inches. In track and field, he was the top member of winning St. Bon’s relay teams, held the 440 yard record and regularly won 220 yard dashes and the javelin.
A perennial all-star baseball pitcher, he was always among the league’s top batters and could play any position with equal effectiveness. He was recognized as one of the best half-backs to ever play soccer in St. John’s and excelled in many races at the St. John’s Regatta.
A great cross-country skier, Jack Canning was a founding member of the Newfoundland Hiking Club and played an important and very prominent role in the Boy Scouts movement within the province. In respect of his outstanding athletic career that featured tremendous success in every sport available, Jack Canning was inducted into the Newfoundland and Labrador Sports Hall of Fame during its inaugural banquet October 13, 1973.
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