Mar 07, 2013

By Jane Brown

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Canadians have been expressing their sadness over the loss of Stompin’ Tom Connors on social media sites such as facebook and twitter.  Prime Minister Stephen Harper captured the mood by tweeting “We have lost a true original”.  Stompin’ Tom penned such classic songs as “Bud the Spud”, “Sudbury Saturday Night”, and “The Hockey Song” which was played to cheering and clapping at last night’s game at the Air Canada Centre between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Ottawa Senators.

The country-folk legend known for his fierce patriotism and songs steeped in all things Canadiana died yesterday at the age of 77.  His publicist Brian Edwards says Stompin’ Tom died from natural causes after living a life dedicated to Canada.  “It’s devastating.  The man stood for everything that Canada stood for.  He was adamant that he stayed a Canadian and it was very apparent that he never left the country to advance his career.  He stayed very true to who he was and who the country was.”

Connors is survived by his wife Lena, two sons, two daughters and several grandchildren.
A public celebration of his life will be held next Wednesday in Peterborough,  the Ontario city where the musician got the name “Stompin’ Tom'”

He posted a letter to his fans on his official website just before he died — to thank them for his career.  Connors wrote that he wanted all his fans, past, present, or future, to know that without them, ”there would have not been any Stompin’ Tom.” He wrote that although he traveled a “long hard bumpy road,“ Canada inspired him with its “beauty, character, and spirit.“Connors also urged his fans “continue to bring Canadiana to the world.“  In Connors words — “I must now pass the torch, to all of you, to help keep the Maple Leaf flying high, and be the Patriot Canada needs now and in the future.”

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