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Introducing Bud Corbett


You may not know who we'd be referring to, if we called this guy by his given names, Quinneth Madill, or used his nickname Punch. But we bet if we said, "Here's Mr. Oakville", everyone within the sound of his voice would say, "Oh, you mean Bud Corbett".

Born and raised in Peterborough, Ontario, Bud came to Oakville in the late forties, after providing distinguished service in the Royal Canadian Air Force from 1941 to 1946. It was during the war years that Bud honed his leadership, coaching both his unit's hockey and softball teams.

When Bud first opened Corbett's Sports, he had his entire stock stuffed into two small rooms in a small storefront on Lakeshore Road in downtown Oakville. It didn't take Bud long to relocate to larger quarters on Thomas Street, but even then business was brisk. Soon, Bud moved the store to Kerr Street, and finally, to its present location on Speers Road. Ownership was assumed by Mr. Ken Brown in 1964, which provided Bud with the freedom to pursue his "love of the game".

In 1963, Bud purchased The Shelburne Golf Course. It was love at first sight, and the gold course became his "baby". He oversaw every aspect of operations, knew all the regulars by name. In fact, it was at Shelburne that Bud made the Club's first hole in one. It was Bud's second.

Bud is the only person to win the Men's Championship at both the Oakville Golf Club and the Trafalgar Golf Club in the same year. He has also won the Ontario Senior Men's Championship and is currently a Lifetime Member of the Canadian Professional Golfer's Association.

However, many are the trophies and awards Bud helped others to win. While Bud was trying to grow a business during the forties and fifties, he was also growing sports teams in Oakville. There wasn't a level of baseball or hockey that Bud didn't coach. He even put together a curling program for the Oakville Ice Centre. Each team was different, each game different, but Bud treated each player the same - with respect.

In fact, Bud is remembered as much for what he did off the field and out of the arena. One of his players was hospitalized for life, and many were the hours Bud spent with him, quietly, away from the spotlight. Always with a pack of lifesavers, always with lifesaving encouragement.

The crowd can be a blur when you're behind the bench, pressing your team for a win. But one season, Bud noticed a young teen-age boy showing up to the games. Every game, Bud watched this kid shiver in a thin jacket and sneakers. Bud was impressed, but felt badly the kid nearly froze at every game. That was until the coach made some inquires and some changes. The next time the kid showed up, he had on warm boots and a winter jacket. Never a word was said.

Bud and his best friend, his wife Cookie, still live in Shelburne.

We salute the man who made it fun to play in this town. We salute "Mr. Oakville", Bud Corbett.


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