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Hockey pioneer Art Dorrington passes in New Jersey

Art Dorrington
PRESSOFATLANTICCITY.COM PHOTOS
Art Dorrington PRESSOFATLANTICCITY.COM PHOTOS

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J.

Truro native Art Dorrington, the first black hockey player signed by an NHL team, died Friday in Atlantic City, where he started his pro hockey career 68 years ago, made his post-hockey home and helped disadvantaged kids find Canada’s game.

Dorrington signed a professional contract with the New York Rangers in 1950, eight years before Fredericton’s Willie O’Ree broke through with the Boston Bruins to become the first black player in the NHL. While he didn’t get called up to the NHL Rangers, Dorrington was the first black player to sign a pro contract with an NHL team.

Dorrington played in the International and Eastern hockey leagues for Atlantic City, Philadelphia, Washington and Johnstown.

In later years, he started the Art Dorrington Ice Hockey Foundation to teach hockey to poor children in Atlantic City. Dorrington is a member of the Nova Scotia Sports Hall of Fame and the Atlantic City Hall of Fame.

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