George Reed dead and obituary, Roughriders Mourn The Loss Of The Legendary

The Saskatchewan Rough Riders Football Club joins its fans and the entire CFL community in mourning the passing of one of the greatest players of all time, George Reed, with deep sadness and heartbreak.

Reed, who died Sunday, one day shy of his 84th birthday, lived a long and wonderful life and achieved incredible things on and off the football field.

After an unprecedented 13-year professional football career with the Saskatchewan Rough Riders, he is widely regarded as one of the greatest running backs in Canadian Football League history. Reed retired on the eve of training camp in 1976 as the all-time leading rusher with 16,116 career yards and 134 touchdowns (the latter record still stands today). On October 24, 1976, the Roughriders retired No. 34 and ensured that no one but Reed could wear No. 34.

An unstoppable force of grit and determination, Reed set a CFL record 11 1,000-yard seasons during his career. He was a nine-time CFL All-Star, a 10-time Western Conference All-Star, and was selected to five consecutive All-Star Games (1970-74). In 1965, Reed rushed for a franchise record 1,768 yards and later won the Schenley Award (CFL’s Most Outstanding Player). He was the runner-up for the award twice, in 1968 and 1969.

Reed, of course, was also a Gray Cup champion and played a major role in rushing for 133 yards and a touchdown to help the club win the inaugural Gray Cup on November 26, 1966.

Along with his success on the court, he has also gained widespread recognition off the court. In 1976, he was awarded the Tom Pate Memorial Award (for outstanding sportsmanship, contributions to the team, community and players’ association) and in 1978 he was awarded the prestigious Order of Canada. He was inducted into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame and the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 1979, the Washington State Hall of Fame in 1983, the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 1984, and the Place of Honor Hall of Fame in 1987.

Reed helped found the CFL and served as president of the CFL Players Association for more than a decade, changing the face of the CFL.

The Rough Riders erected a statue to him and teammate Ron Lancaster in 2017 and renamed the street along Mosaic Stadium to George Reed Way in 2019.

Perhaps the only thing that rivals his contribution to the Roughriders and Canadian soccer is his passion for giving back to the Saskatchewan community. In 1975, Reed founded the George Reed Foundation and spent nearly 50 years volunteering and working in the areas of education, continuing learning, healthy living and people with disabilities.

To continue the remarkable legacy of #34, the Saskatchewan Roughrider Foundation and the George Rider Foundation recently joined forces to create the George Rider Legacy Fund. The fund will ensure continued support for the causes that are most important to Reid in the years to come: Special Olympics Saskatchewan and Mother Teresa Secondary School.

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