Reverand Gregory McLellan
Born: May 23, 1923 (Deepdale, Nova Scotia)
Died: January 30, 2013 (Calgary, Alberta)
As a young man, Greg McLellan was a slugging outfielder for the Calgary Purity 99s baseball team in 1946 and 1947, before jumping to the rival Calgary Buffaloes of the Big Four Intercity League in 1948.
McLellan, who worked part-time at Calgary Brewery and as a coal miner, was a power hitter with a knack for knocking in the decisive run. He was offered a tryout by the Brooklyn Dodgers, but instead entered the priesthood, trading his baseball uniform for priestly vestments. He was ordained at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Drumheller, Alberta, in 1949.
Using a Harley-Davidson motorcycle to cover his parish, he became known as the “Speedy Priest.” Though born in Nova Scotia, he adopted Western style and was known to wear cowboy boots even while conducting mass.