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1950s / Listowel Arena Disaster 50th Anniversary
Fifty years ago today, on Saturday morning, February 28, 1959, in a small Canadian town not far from where I live, a terrible tragedy occurred: The roof of the Listowel (Ontario) Arena collapsed due to a heavy accumulation of snow and inadequate construction. Seven peewee hockey players (aged 10, 11 and 12) and Listowel's recreation director were crushed to death by the debris while they were on the ice surface. A group of other young players preparing for their upcoming game in the arena's dressing rooms were completely unscathed. The arena was only four years old.