ATHLETE – MULTIPLE SPORTS
Although many athletes play multiple sports, it is rare for an athlete to excel in more than one sport, however Gary Brandon was an exception. Gary excelled in three sports – baseball, curling and golf.
Gary developed his skills in youth baseball in Prince Albert primarily as a pitcher and first baseman. Gary played for the Prince Albert Bohemians in the Saskatchewan Senior Baseball League in 1968 and 1969 winning provincial titles both seasons as well as the Western Canadian Crown in 1968.
After the Prince Albert Bohemian’s folded, Gary went on to play for the Saskatoon Commodores from 1970-1975 and again in 1979 winning 4 provincial titles. In 1972 Gary was recruited by the Unity Cardinals, a provincial all-star team, to compete at the Canadian Senior Championship in Camrose, Albert. Gary pitched in two of the victories helping the Cardinals to win the Canadian title. The Unity Cardinals, including Gary Brandon, were inducted into the Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972.
Gary had success on the curling ice defeating the likes of Rick Folk, Ed Lukowich, Barry Fry, Paul Savage and others. Gary teamed with his mentor and sidekick Dennis Cochrane in men’s and cash spiels and his wife Bonnie in mixed competitions. While in Prince Albert Gary made it to Provincials final in both men’s and mixed however came up short, finishing as high as third in both. While living in Melfort Gary played 3rd on the Bob Olsen Rink which was a runner-up to Brad Heidt for the Men’s Provincial Championship and a chance to represent Saskatchewan at the 1995 Brier. Gary and Bonnie won 2 Mixed provincial titles while living in Melfort, and represented Saskatchewan at Nationals; Gary also was a member of Ray Field’s Saskatchewan championship team which competed at the 1999 Canadian Senior Men’s Championship.
Gary was a very capable golfer and golf proved to be the sport that he could make a comfortable living from. After moving to Melfort Gary was hired as the Director of Golf at the Melfort Golf and Country Club. He also designed the Mark’s Nine Golf Course just north of Prince Albert.