Vancouver was a much different sports town when Clancy Loranger started his 47-year newspaper career with the Province in 1939.

There were no Canucks, Lions, Whitecaps, Giants or Canadians. The only professional sports in the city were minor league hockey and baseball. Amateur sports were major beats. Television was yet to be invented and radio coverage was limited to a couple of sportscasters.

It was in this Vancouver that 18-year-old Loranger started his profession as a $7-a-week copy boy and began moonlighting in the Province’s sports department. In 1941 he was promoted to a full-time sports writing position. Two years later he moved to the Vancouver News-Herald, where he served five years as sports editor and one year as city editor.

In 1951 he returned to the Province. Hockey and baseball were among Clancy’s beats. He covered baseball for over twenty years, right up to when the Triple A Vancouver Mounties folded in 1969. Loranger’s love for the sport began as a youngster when he picked up a secondhand copy of 1925 Reach Baseball Guide and read about the exploits of legendary pitcher Walter Johnson.

The minor league and then National Hockey League Canucks were part of Loranger’s beat for two decades. On October 9, 1970 he covered Vancouver’s debut in the NHL. The disappointing 5-2 loss to Los Angeles was summed up perfectly by Loranger: “They got Vancouver’s National Hockey League show on the road, but somebody had better fire the script girl. The good guys lost.”

Besides covering sporting events, Loranger had penned columns on an intermittent basis. In 1965 it became his full-time job. For the next 21 years he wrote five columns each week for the Province, becoming one of Vancouver’s most popular media personalities. Loranger represented the last of the old-time sports writer, the ever-present cigar in hand–he was among the first to arrive and last to leave at any game he attended.

He listed covering the 1976 Olympics in Montreal and the Canucks’ 1982 Stanley Cup run as career highlights. His greatest sports thrill, however, came in August 1954 when he watched Roger Bannister race past John Landy during the last lap of the “Miracle Mile” at Empire Stadium.

In recognition of Loranger’s contribution to baseball in Vancouver, the city named a street adjoining Nat Bailey Stadium, “Clancy Loranger Way.” It was a fitting tribute, honouring Loranger’s passion for sports journalism which he summed up as being one of the lucky few who was able to do what he loved to do all his working life.