Bruce LeGrow has spent his life focused on fitness, so he tried his hand at every sport he could when an opportunity arose.
His sports resume speaks volumes of his success not only as an athlete, but his leadership skills in stepping up to help grow the sports he immersed himself in throughout his life.
His contribution to cross-country skiing in Newfoundland and Labrador has culminated with an induction into the Cross-Country Newfoundland and Labrador Hall of Fame in the builder category.
LeGrow, who now resides in Stephenville with his wife Jacqueline, is a national director with the Canadian Masters Ski Association who decided to take over the role of president of the Whaleback Nordic Ski Club in Stephenville back in 1983. He took on the volunteer role with hopes of making a difference, like so many other people who assume volunteer leadership roles in sports organizations.
“I basically had a vision for Whaleback that I wanted to see as one of the best nordic ski clubs in the province and I stayed on until I think I accomplished that,” he said.
He was both surprised and honoured to hear he was among those being inducted into the inaugural Hall of Fame for the sport he plans on enjoying until he can’t do it anymore.
“It means everything,” he said of his award. “To be recognized by ... I guess ... the skiing fraternity is certainly I would say the ultimate.”
His induction marks the second time the former provincial court judge was recognized for his outstanding contribution to a sport. His stellar career as a gifted right-handed pitcher with a nasty rise ball led him into the Softball Newfoundland and Labrador Hall of Fame in 1986 in the player category.
LeGrow wasn’t shy about getting his feet wet in a new sport. He was a competitive swimmer back in his prime and he also likes to play a round of golf at the Harmon Seaside Links, where he had just returned from when contacted by The Western Star to discuss his award. He also served as president of the Caribou Curling Club in Stephenville for a number of years.
However, his foray into the nordic ski scene isn’t something he takes credit for. His wife and three daughters — Jennifer Delorme, Renee MacTavish and Teri MacDonald — were avid nordic skiers who kept encouraging him to give it a shot. He was a late bloomer for sure, getting his first taste of nordic skiing at the age of 48.
“They finally convinced me to get into cross-country skiing and I guess the rest is history,” he said.
It’s something he would recommend to anybody who wants an activity boasting so many benefits.
“I would say there’s nothing like it, I mean you can do it from one to 100 and there’s no better exercise for anybody who wants to adopt a healthy lifestyle.”
LeGrow has no plans to slow down. On an annual basis, he competes in the World Masters Ski Championships and plans on being on the start line in Russia in 2015.
The good news, he’s quick to point out, is that he will be moving into the 70-74 age bracket, which provides a smile for him because now he’s going to be among the youngsters in his age category.
“So, that’s the time to kick ass,” he said with a hearty chuckle.