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Foster Hewitt Reporting

The Story

As if to prove that he can cover more than just hockey, Foster Hewitt's eponymous CBC Radio program is a barrage of stories from every corner of the sporting world. In this 1948 episode of Foster Hewitt Reporting we get the works: odd sports news (an Alaskan football game in parkas), a celebrity interview (boxing legend Jack Dempsey), a roundup of the week's top stories, and more. There's even hockey! 

Medium: Radio
Program: Foster Hewitt Reporting
Broadcast Date: Dec. 31, 1948
Guest(s): Jack Dempsey
Announcer: Joel Aldridge
Reporter: Foster Hewitt
Duration: 14:22

Did You know?

• Foster Hewitt carried on the family tradition of getting involved in boxing. He fought at Upper Canada College, and at the University of Toronto he became intercollegiate champion. He said that over eight years of amateur boxing he was undefeated, winning all 58 bouts. Hewitt talked about weighing a meagre 103 pounds (47 kilograms), but fought in the 112-pound category.

• Foster Hewitt points to Jack Dempsey's 1921 world heavyweight championship fight with Georges Carpentier in New Jersey as the moment he decided to go into radio. The fight was the first major sporting event to be carried on radio, and opened up a new avenue for the budding journalist.

• Foster Hewitt Reporting premiered on CBC Radio on Sept. 3, 1948, and ran for three seasons. The CBC Times from that week said the show "will cover sports on a national basis - giving listeners the story behind the sports headlines. The show has been placed on Friday night purposely, to provide listeners with a review of outstanding events during the past week, plus those human interest stories which Foster tells so well."

• You can hear another great Foster Hewitt Reporting interview with groundbreaking female athlete Bobbie Rosenfeld.

• Contrary to popular belief, Hewitt was not the first person to call a hockey game on the radio. It was actually fellow CFCA reporter Norman Albert, who called an OHA intermediate hockey game between North Toronto and Midland on Feb. 8, 1923. (Albert is also believed to have called the first NHL broadcast, a game between the Ottawa Senators and the Toronto St. Pats, a week later.)

• Another broadcaster from Saskatchewan is credited with broadcasting the world's first complete hockey game. Lionel Dyke (Pete) Parker called the play-by-play for a March 14, 1923, game between the Regina Capitals and the Edmonton Eskimos hockey teams.


Foster Hewitt: Voice of Hockey more