Featured Guests

Don Cherry | Michael Calder

Ark Midnight 230 - A Poppy for JFK

Nov 21, 2020

Don Cherry

International sports icon and is considered the Godfather of hockey. His nick name is “Grapes” and his trademark shirt collars and flamboyant, patterned jackets are his calling card, as are his outspoken analytical insights on the game, politics, patriotism and… his unrepentant support for the troops. He was born just miles from where the game was invented in Kingston, Ontario. Canada’s one time capital, and also the home of its Royal Military College.

His grandfather was a Mountie and his father a semi- pro baseball player and an electrician. So Don’s high voltage personality, athleticism and national pride seems to be naturally hard wired from birth.

He has travelled across more of North America than Woodie Guthrie and has enjoyed his beloved game as a journeyman, playing for almost as many city’s teams as Johnny Cash sings of in “I’ve been everywhere”…Boston, Barrie, Windsor, Waterloo, Tulsa, Trois Rivieres, Spokane, Springfield, Sudbury, Vancouver, Rochester and… Hershey. Following his playing days, a storied coaching career ensued with the Rochester Americans, (AHL Coach of the year) and then called to coach in The NHL for The Boston Bruins, Colorado Rockies and Team Canada.

His late wife Rose, the mother of his children, Timothy and Cindy, was also the family team GM and equipment manager. She faithfully packed up and unpacked 53 times over the course of their lives to accommodate team trades and relocations. Fortunately, they never had to go to Madagascar, a place that a one -time coach had frequently threatened he would send Don to, if only he could.

Mr. Cherry is an honors graduate of the most literal school of hard knocks, with advanced degrees in trading knuckles, body checks, elbows and high sticking. He’s also a history scholar who enjoys reading up on military and naval battles. His coaching acumen and fighting spirit may be inspired by men like Admiral Nelson.

He is best known as a 38 year veteran and controversial commentator on “Coaches Corner”, the celebrated pulpit from where his highly charged opinions and observations aired during the first intermission NHL games. A Saturday night staple. Unfortunately, a most cruel irony befell him, he was unceremoniously fired as a broadcaster on November 11th of 2019…The very same date Canada and America respectfully observe a national day of remembrance for fallen veterans and to honor those who serve. He’s also enthusiastically visited with them in Afghanistan.

How did this happen? Simply, because he said, “You People”, while addressed the fact that apparently many new residents in his city were not respecting a Nov. 11th Canadian tradition, wearing a poppy to honor those who had fought and fallen in battle. They died for all to enjoy the benefits and freedoms of their homeland, and…supposedly for his, and all of our valued freedoms of speech…Really?

The Don Cherry’s Grapevine Podcast


Michael Calder

Graduate of the University of California, Berkeley. It is at Berkeley that Mr. Calder wrote his thesis, The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy; An analysis of the social, political, and economic factors which led to his assassination by the Central Intelligence Agency.

Calder is currently studying the LAPD investigation files of the Robert Kennedy murder in Los Angeles. To follow his investigation and meet many of the players go to www.jfkcia.com


YouTube: jfkcia

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