The Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame is proud to announce the selection of the late John M. “Corky” McCann of Red Deer, Alta. into the Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame on Aug. 20 in Battleford.
McCann participated in baseball all his life. He played six years with Notre Dame Hounds of the Canadian Baseball League from 1942 to 1947 and then 14 years with the with the Sage Brush League, Highway 13, from 1948 to 1962.
McCann was a disciplined, reliable, honest, competitive and hard working athlete. He was on the roster as an outfielder for the Notre Dame Hounds Senior Baseball Team in 1942. World War II accounted for many baseball players joining the Canadian Armed Forces, leaving a small number to participate at home in the Western Canadian Baseball League.
McCann practiced his catching skills and made his debut on July 11, 1943, with the Hounds senior team, where he would be catching for pitcher Frank Germann. He proved to be very effective as he helped to keep the team in first place in the league and won the pennant.
The Hounds were pleased with their 1944 season but McCann was overjoyed with his own performance. In tournament play, the Hounds took first place at Lumsden and Wilcox tournaments and finished second at events in Shaunavon and Swift Current.
The 1945 regular season saw Notre Dame in second place and McCann was the catcher in about half of the games. 1946 and 1947 were McCann’s last years in the Western Canadian Baseball League.
The Germann and McCann battery finished up their wonderful five-year run as the pitcher-catcher duo that appeared together at Paratrooper Training and many other affairs between their meeting in 1939 and their last game in 1947. They remained friends for life.
His first wife, Pat, died in 1968. They had six children, Chuck, Patsy, Clancy, Mickey, Grady and Riley. These children were all adopted by Ann, McCann’s second wife. McCann and Ann had two daughters, Donna and Heather.
McCann, was a leader at Athol Murray Notre Dame College, a Mayor of Admiral, and a Saskatchewan Wheat Pool General Manager for the Country Elevator Division.
McCann died on Feb. 1, 2015.