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Rhode Island Reds Heritage Society

August 4, 2019, 6:38 AM ET [2 Comments]
Paul Stewart
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I have been invited and accepted the invitation to attend and be the guest speaker at a wonderful hockey event to be held today in Warrick, RI: the 19th annual reunion luncheon of the Rhode Island Reds Heritage Society. The event starts at noon and will be held in the Carousel Building at Goddard State Park.

In addition to speaking at the event, I will be signing free autographs. There will be copies of my book, Ya Wanna Go?, for sale.

I love being in the Ocean State, and I admire the Reds Heritage Society's efforts to preserve the history of the Providence/ Rhode Island Reds. The non-profit organization was formed in 2000 and will celebrate its 20th anniversary next year. The Reds team had a 51-year history as a club in the Canadian-American Hockey League (1926-36) and American Hockey League (1936-1977). The team then merged with the Broome Dusters, with whom I played before joining the World Hockey Association's Cincinnati Stingers.

This year's theme will be the commemoration of the Reds winning the Calder Cup championship in 1948-49. Former Boston Bruins center Terry Reardon served as the Reds' player-coach. The team's biggest standouts were former Detroit Red Wings star Carl Liscombe and diminutive French-Canadian forwards Roger Bedard and Raymond LaPlante. However, historically, the team from that era is most notable as the pro career starting place of future Hockey Hall of Fame defenseman Allan Stanley.

Additionally, it's goaltender was ex-Bruin netminder Harvey Bennett Sr.. Although born and raised in Canada, he settled in Rhode Island and became the patriarch of the one hockey's first notable American families in the NHL. Sons Curt, Harvey Jr. and Bill all played in the NHL in the 1970s to early 1980s. In particular, Brown University alum Curt was an NHL star, who had back-to-back 30+ goal seasons for the Atlanta Flames in the mid-1970s.

I wasn't born until a few years after the Reds' first of two Calder Cup championships (they'd win it again in 1955-56, coached by longtime Bruins defenseman Jack Crawford). However, I have many fond memories of games in Providence as well as playing with Bingo as part of the AHL version of the Dusters. I'll share some of my favorite stories later today. Hope to see you there in Warrick today.


A 2018 inductee into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame, Paul Stewart holds the distinction of being the first U.S.-born citizen to make it to the NHL as both a player and referee. On March 15, 2003, he became the first American-born referee to officiate in 1,000 NHL games.

Visit Paul's official websites, YaWannaGo.com and Officiating by Stewart.
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