viking ski club


Skip Sheldon

The Viking Board of Directors is sad to announce the death of Dr. Huntington (Skip) Sheldon III on December 29, 2017, aged 87. Skip was a major benefactor of McGill (Sheldon Biotechnology Centre) and Johns Hopkins (emeritus trustee) universities. To read a comprehensive obituary: 

While he was president of Viking (1973-76), he drove our racing activities. He was also chairman of the Canadian Ski Association's Cross-Country Committee. Events such as a World Masters Cross-Country championship and a World Biathalon championship were held at Viking under his leadership. On a local level, he sponsored many young skiers, including the Carruthers brothers, to provincial, national and international events.

Skip was the owner of several hundred acres of land south of Jackson Road where most of our racing trails are located. It was his wish for more than 20 years to protect this land from commercial and residential development. The land was transferred on December 21, 2017, to the Ste-Adèle land trust. Eventually, the municipality of Morin-Heights will become a part owner of the northern section, and this will be added to its parkland. Viking, represented by our president Grant McKenna, was a signatory to this agreement. The Nature Conservancy of Canada contributed its vast knowledge and considerable costs. Viking will have a permanent servitude which will ensure access to the trails, Skip's Hut, and our biathlon installations. The continuation of our cross-county skiing, biathlon, orienteering and related activities is now permanently assured.

The southern half of the land will be designated as a nature reserve, and Viking will erect a suitable permanent sign on Jackson Road thanking the Sheldon family. Our board of directors will also commemorate Skip's passing by naming an important trail in his honour, or something similar.

I would like to acknowledge the significant contributions made by our president Grant McKenna in negotiating this agreement in Viking's interest. Thanks also to our immediate past president Richard L'Heureux for his work on the file.

Gordon Cohen