Cookie Gilchrist ailing

The Toronto Star had a brief mention of great RB Cookie Gilchrist suffering from throat cancer back home in the U.S. He had an excellent CFL career before going to the US and starring down there. Gilchrist scored 2 TDs in the Cats '57 Grey Cup win.

Get well cards can be sent to him at:

2870 Meadow St.
Natrona Hts, PA 15065-1818

An Argo-Cat fan

Fond memories here of one of the real characters to have graced the CFL fields over the years.........

The actual quote in the Star article identifies him as "Former Buffalo Bills and Toronto Argo star running back Cookie Gilchrist "..........

Now gee, I wonder how they happened to omit the fact that he was once a Tiger-Cat?


An Argo-Cat fan

All the best Cookie, you were before my time but have heard so many good things about you.

Now gee, I wonder how they happened to omit the fact that he was once a Tiger-Cat?

You do know that Hamilton exists only as some smelly infested good-for-nothing town to many Torontonians, don't you? :wink:

Sure do Earl; I was born and raised in Hamilton and now live in Toronto. If I had lived in Toronto all my life I might have ended up thinking as almost all Torontonians do, that civilization stops west of the Humber River.

Fortunately I do not think that way, and the TigerCats are still near and dear to my heart.

....and, Cookie wasn't before my time.

I watched Cookie's entire career and was impressed with his talent and showmanship.
He was certainly an unforgetable character for me and I'm sure for many, who played exceptional football on both sides of the border.

I'm truly sorry to hear about his illness and sincerely hope he can overcome it.

One of the all-time greats. He should be in the HoF.
I believe he spent at least a part of a season in Saskatchewan between his tenures in Hamilton and Toronto.
He probably played at more positions than any other football player, as a FB, RB, LB, even DE and DT, and did some place-kicking for Toronto. I think he still holds the record for most points in a game by an EFC player- 3 TDs, several converts and FGs in a game against the Alouettes, 1960.

All the best, Cookie!!!

Keep in mind that Cookie is the only player in history to refuse induction into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame for reasons of perceived racism and managerial practices he objected to.

See ... 0of%20Fame for an excerpt of this.

He is a member of the American Football League Hall of Fame for his years as a Buffalo Bill.

Best wishes to him and his family.

Oski Wee Wee,

Declined acceptance to the Canadian HoF and accepted it in the USA?


Can't say I watched him play (a bit before I started watching football), but playing all those positions speaks a huge talent, leave alone the stats!

What's his issue with the CFL, that he declines an invitation to the League's HoF?


Cookie Gilchrist started playing in Canada for the Kitchener Waterloo Dutchmen in the old ORFU.He was amazing as one of the twin fullbacks in the TiCat backfield along with Gerry McDougall. They both went to the AFL when it began, Cookie with the Bills and Gerry with the L.A.Chargers. Gerry later returned to the Cats while Cookie stayed south of the border. I believe "Chester" Gilchrist was 19 years old when he played for the Dutchmen.
Get well Cookie.
Pat Lynch (the old guy in section 7 )

I'll clear a couple of things up...

Cookie came to Sarnia and played for the Imperials in 1954, where he won the "Jim Shanks Memorial Trophy" as MVP. My family donated that trophy to the "Canadian Football Hall Of Fame" a couple of years back. (It was the first pro trophy he won)

He did join the "Dutchmen" the following year and then signed with the Ticats in 1956.

He refused induction to the Canadian Football Hall Of Fame, on principal, because he experienced racism at the hands of American coaches. He loved Canada and Canadians and in fact his children were born here and continue to live in the Toronto area.

There really is no "AFL Hall Of Fame" it's an internet website.

Cookie was really "blackballed" by the Football Hall Of Fame on the American side. He belongs there as well as the Canadian Football Hall Of Fame.

He did play for Sask. in 1958.

He is an interesting individual and a great man. He was an early civil rights leader and in fact was instrumental in getting "Ali" to come to Canada to fight George Chuvalo.

He led the 1965 Pro Bowl Boycott.

A little "google" research turns up some great stories about this guy. A good movie could be made about his exploits.

I encourage you to drop him a line to help him with this battle with cancer. :thup:

I think I'll print out hte get-well wishes from this thread and include them in a card I'm going to send to him.

An Argo-Cat fan

A bit more info on Gilchrist's encounters with racism can be found in the book "The Plastic Orgasm" by LaVerne Barnes, which has a unique and eye-opening take on race, Canada and the CFL in general.

Get well, Mr. Gilchrist, and, if possible, come for a visit some time.