Gösta Edvardsson

A long time member of a number of years ago, Gösta Edvardsson passed away today (March 10) at the age of 94. As he was an active and friendly club member, Gösta will be remembered fondly by our longer time members. Here are some stories from our members:

From Bill Meldrum

I have many memories of xc skiing and racing with Gösta. Here is just one of them from when we first met:

Back in the 70”s when I was training for the marathon and other races, I would head out early (so that Judy could ski in the afternoon) on Saturday mornings to ski to the fire tower. I would usually be following a single track that someone had made that morning. There was no mechanical grooming in those days. Before reaching the tower I would inevitably meet Gösta on his way back. After several weekends when this scenario repeated, I remember Gösta asking me if I headed to the tower every Saturday at this time. I assured him I usually did.

The next Saturday I encountered no track beyond Western Lodge. It was a lot more work breaking track! On my way back, I met Gösta with a big smile on his face. He said “I decided to sleep in a bit longer today”. It was a ‘cat and mouse’ game after that but it was hard to go much later with Judy waiting her turn to ski.

We raced against each other in individual and team events for many years. It was a long time before I realized that Gösta was more than 20 years older than me! His accomplishments on the ski trails were an inspiration to many of us.

From Bill Anderson

We first met Gösta when we were living in Montreal and would ski or orienteer from the Viking club in Morin Heights. We would bump into him later skiing in the Gats or at an Omeet after we moved to Ottawa. We didn't connect for several years but by coincidence I started doing IT contract work at Flakt in the 90's. I didn't know that he was the Controller of the company. One time during my two year stint at Flakt, the company was late in my monthly payments. I had Ted De St Croix working with me so it was a chunk of change. Moving up the normal channels in the accounting department was not getting me anywhere. The company was losing business and there had been some layoffs.

I bumped into Gösta at lunch and asked him how things were going and would the payment delay take much longer. He looked surprised, walked me through a startled accounting department to his office and wrote me a check for the complete amount on the spot.
 
Gloria and I would visit Gösta and Ellen at his farm near Constance Bay for several years in the 90s but then lost touch.
 
He was an outstanding gentleman and a character that we will never forget.
 
From Stefan Bergström

I met Gösta first time in the late 1980's at orienteering events in Gatineau Park. In the early 1990's I had more to do with him as we both were on the board of the Ottawa's Canadian-Nordic Society for a few years. I remember once skiing in the Gatineau Park meeting Gösta in a trail junction. We were going in the same direction and I had difficulty keeping up with him. At the time he must have been well in his seventies and 30+ older than me, but he had the superior ski technique.  Gösta several times competed in the Cross-country world masters championship, I believe into his eighties. Last time I met Gösta was at the European Film festival's screening of a Swedish movie, maybe 10 years ago. For several years I usually saw Gösta and his lovely wife Ellen at this annual film festival screening of Swedish movies. 

A true gentleman.

From Marketa Graham

I met Gösta when I got into orienteering shortly after I started dating Brian in 1989. Brian and I would be seeing Gösta frequently orienteering or xc skiing in the winter or  running with his ski poles in the fall mainly in the Gatineau Park. He was always so friendly and we chatted about xc skiing and such. Gösta was our inspiration and we would always say to each other that we would want to be like him in our 70s. We would see Gösta roller skiing along the Rideau River bike path as well. He was in his 70s and getting some puzzled looked from passers by ...and his technique was beautiful and always smile on his face.
 
Ski in peace Gösta
 
From Bert Waslander
 
My own contact with Gösta was infrequent. Once we organised a local meet at Lac Philippe, and jogging out together to the parking lot after placing controls he challenged me to go a little faster and I could not keep up with him, my senior by 22 years!
 
 Gösta's obituary can be found in the Citizen