Hamilton — and Canada, for that matter — lost an iconic and passionate citizen with the death of David Braley on Monday.
Membership in the Order of Canada, the Hamilton Gallery of Distinction and the Canadian Football Hall of Fame are just some of the accolades bestowed upon him.
He was an incredibly successful entrepreneur. When he founded Orlick Industries, there were only three employees in the company. He grew Orlick into an internationally recognized leader in auto parts manufacturing and, yes, he kept the company in Hamilton.
He parlayed his passion for sports into so many endeavours.
He took over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1989, when they were on the verge of bankruptcy.
He chaired the committee that brought the very successful World Road Cycling Championship to Hamilton.
Braley was also the first Hamiltonian to serve in the Canadian Senate, and then, of course, is his remarkable philanthropy.
He donated millions of dollars to health care and education in Hamilton.
He recently led the charge and helped finance renovations to the world-famous rock garden at the Royal Botanical Gardens.
When asked a couple of years ago why he was so generous with his time and his money, he replied: “I’m making sure Hamilton has the best. I think Hamilton is a very special place.”
David Braley, a champion for Hamilton and a champion for his country.
He will be missed.
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