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Memorable Manitobans: Leon Hermisdas “Leo” Benard (1899-1977)

Athlete, lawyer, judge.

Born at Winnipeg on 13 March 1899, son of Aime Benard and Marie Louise LaFleche (?-1962), he was an noted hockey player in his youth, playing for the Selkirk Fishermen, being described as “one of the three greatest stick-handlers in Canada.” He played for the University of Manitoba from 1925 to 1927. He was offered a contract to play in the NHL was turned it down on the advice of his father. He attended Loyola University (Montreal) and the University of Manitoba Law School, graduating from the latter in 1927. He articled in law with Thomas J. Bogan and the Pitblado law firm. In 1949, he was made a King’s Counsel. He was appointed a county court judge in April 1961. He died in early September 1977 and was buried in the St. Mary’s Cemetery.

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Benard House (25 Middle Gate, Winnipeg)

Sources:

Birth registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“Ten Manitoba lawyers named King’s Counsel,” Winnipeg Free Press, 1 January 1949, page 1.

“Judge Benard loved hockey, cool beer,” Winnipeg Free Press, 30 March 1965, page 17.

“Also a hockey standout,” Winnipeg Free Press, 7 September 1977, page 150.

Obituary [Mary Helen Benard], Winnipeg Free Press, 3 March 1998, page 29.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 30 December 2019

Memorable Manitobans

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