Bob Pugh, a long-time sports administrator and an inductee to the McGill Sports Hall of Fame, has passed away. He was 93.

Born Robert Wesley Pugh on Oct. 29, 1928 in Verdun, Que., he died in Almonte, Ont., on June 2, 2022.

A former director of Hockey Canada, Pugh served as co-chair of the Canadian Olympic Hockey Committee and spent six years as president of the Ottawa - St. Lawrence Athletics Association. In 1971, he became the first executive director of the Canadian Intercollegiate Athletic Union (now known as U SPORTS), an organization he helped create and then served there for 20 years until his retirement in 1991. During his tenure, a much-debated national athletic scholarship program was finally adopted. He was also a member of the organizing committee that established the Vanier Cup, arguably the most prestigious event across all Canadian intercollegiate sports.

Nicknamed "Bullet Bob" during his junior football career, Pugh was a starting quarterback for the Verdun Fashions in the late 1940s. He earned an athletic scholarship at Springfield College in Massachusetts and graduated with a science degree in 1950. He then played senior football for the Verdun Bulldogs before a stint at McGill's Macdonald College, where he captained the varsity football team.

From 1955 to 1969, he served as the tireless director of athletics at McGill's Macdonald campus in Ste. Anne de Bellevue, Que. During his tenure, he also was a lecturer in the department and coached the Macdonald football and hockey teams for nine and 14 seasons, respectively.

In 1972, he was appointed chef-de-mission of the Canadian delegation at the FISU world university games in Moscow. A decade later, he was a member of the board of directors for the 1983 FISU Games in Edmonton.

Pugh later served for 20 years on the Lanark County Board of Education and a dozen years on the Almonte Hospital Board, with  terms as chair of both. He was also part of the group that built the Stewart Community Centre, an arena in Pakenham Ont.

Pugh received a number of honours during his lengthy administrative career, including the national Austin-Matthews Award (1981) presented to an individual who has made a long-term outstanding contribution to inter-university sport. In 1992, he merited the OUA conference's J.P. Loosemore Award (1992), presented to an individual who exemplifies the best in university sport in terms of ethics, integrity and honesty.

The R.W. Pugh Fair Play Award has been presented annually since 1986, to the most sportsmanlike player in U SPORTS men's hockey. In 2008, a group of McGill alumni and friends organized a golf tournament to establish an annual Bob Pugh Scholarship.

The late Bryan Murray, a former NHL head coach and general manager, once said upon learning of Pugh's induction to the McGill sports pantheon in 2010: "I was coached in football and hockey, in the early sixties by Bob Pugh. I also had the opportunity to work with him, as an assistant athletics director and hockey coach, on the Macdonald campus. I remember the discipline, behavior, work ethic and respect that all of his student-athletes were expected to show and in return were shown.

"Bob was a classy, respectful man who expected each of us to conduct ourselves as good representatives of the school and team. I remember the effort he put into his responsibility as the coach and athletics director.  I know that exposure to Bob had a huge influence on my career. The treatment and respect I received allowed me to better understand how athletes should be treated. I have tried to follow that code with my teams. I wish him good luck for this much deserved recognition."

He is survived by son Wesley, daughters Paige, Bronwen Stacey, and the late Corrie Halstead, in addition to five grandchildren and a great granddaughter.

Sadly, Thora Doreen Pugh, his partner and wife of 67 years, passed away on June 15, 2022. A joint visitation will be on June 25 at 1 to 4 p.m. at the Almonte Civitan Centre. Condolences can be posted online at crgamble.com