Billy Arcand

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Joseph Maurice Arthur (Billy) Arcand

Born: December 24, 1921 (Shawinigan, Quebec)
Died: October 25, 2013 (Shawinigan, Quebec)

The defenceman Maurice (Billy) Arcand skated for the Providence Reds of the American Hockey League for four seasons.

The 5-foot-7, 165-pound rearguard scored 21 goals and recorded 69 assists in those four seasons. He also had four assists in 10 playoff games as the Reds claimed the Calder Cup championship trophy in 1948-49.

Maurice Arcand was the oldest son of 13 children born to Anne-Marie (née St-Pierre) and Paul Arcand. He played for the hometown Shawinigan Cataracts for a season before taking a job in a Quebec City shipyard during the Second World War. He played for the Davie Shipbuilding team for a season before rejoining the Cataracts.

ImageThe wartime 1944-45 Cataracts were known for icing the first all-black line in professional hockey with Manning McIntyre and brothers Ossie and Herb Carnegie.

In 1945, the defenceman rejected offers from both the Reds and the Tulsa Oilers of the United States Hockey League, signing again with the hometown team. Arcand finally succumbed to the appeal of the professional minor leagues by signing with the Reds in October, 1946.

It is possible he gained the nickname Billy after the boxer Billy Arcand, a prominent New England fighter of the 1920s.

After four seasons in Rhode Island, he returned to Quebec to play for the Chicoutimi Sagueneens. After a season, he was traded to Shawinigan. In 1953, he joined the Halifax Atlantics, who won the Alexander Trophy as Canada’s semi-professional hockey champions. Arcand was named to a league first team all-star. The 1953-54 Atlantics were inducted into the Nova Scotia Sports Hall of Fame in 1980.

In 1947, Arcand and his father bought the Old Mill restaurant in Shawinigan.

Arcand was in the news earlier in 2013 after he was badly beaten. Police arrested a drunk and mentally disturbed neighbour in Shawinigan.

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