This tribute to George Daszkowski was written by CMHF inductee Norris McDonald and originally appeared online at the Toronto Star.
Photo credit: Russell Purcell
Gary Grant reported in last Saturday’s Toronto Star Wheels the passing of Paul Bryan, a long-time volunteer marshal who was a friend and mentor to many of the marshals working to keep racers and racing safe these days.
Now the motorsport community has lost another giant with the news that George Daszkowski (above) died at the weekend following a lengthy battle with cancer.
When I think of George and racing, I think of passion. He was passionate about the past and the present. He was not too optimistic about the future, though, but we’ll come back to that.
The passion that I speak of centred around the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame, particularly the archives. Although he was a walking encyclopedia of racing knowledge, he believed strongly in the storing, filing and indexing/cross-referencing of photographs and documents in order to create and maintain a historical record of the sport.
“You watch,” he told me once when we met for dinner at Snug Harbour, a restaurant in his beloved Port Credit. “If the archives are not nurtured and preserved, they will be lost. People can say not to worry about it but if there isn’t constant attention, things can go missing. When something’s gone, that’s it: it’s gone.”
It bothered him that not all associated with the Hall shared his vision.