November 16, 2017

#TBT – a pipes|drums throwback pic

We continue our periodic Throwback Thursday series with another never before seen photograph.

We take you back to the 1980 Montreal Highland Games, on a rainy day in early August at the games park used several iterations of the event ago. The competition was held on the banks of the St. Laurence Seaway. Massive tankers and cargo ships would float by while pipers, drummers and bands did their thing.

This was when almost all who participated in the North American Championships at Maxville, Ontario, the previous day, would pack up on Sunday morning to make the one-hour driver to Montreal for yet more action. The beer tent at Montreal was a celebrated affair.

Times have changed, as of course they do, and people change with them. The mustachioed piper is of course Bill Livingstone. But who might be the bespectacled player?

It’s none other than a teen-aged Hector MacDonald, who would go on to formulate a successful solo career in the Open/Professional grade, as well as three decades of service to pipe bands, including the Grade 1 Toronto Police and, here, the Grade 1 General Motors Pipe Band.

Today MacDonald has moved on to be an adjudicator with the Pipers & Pipe Band Society of Ontario, while also lending his teaching and playing services to the Grade 4 Ryan Russell Memorial Pipe Band, the teaching group in the Toronto Police organization. Some years after this image was taken, he would become a serving Toronto Police officer in a successful career that he continues today as a detective within the force.

General Motors of course would morph into the Grade 1 78th Fraser Highlanders and the rest, as they say, is history.

We hope that you enjoy our ongoing #TBT series. If you have a never-before-seen photo thatyou would like to share with the piping and drumming world, feel free to send it our way.

Image copyright pipes|drums




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