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The Gee-Gees family is in mourning

Friday May 6, 2016
Coach Mac on his scooter on the football field.

It is with great regret that we learned about the passing of former Gee-Gees Football Offensive Line Coach, Bill MacDermott.

In his more than 50 years of coaching, "Coach Mac" has acquired an impressive amount of knowledge which he has passed on to all the athletes who had the chance to meet this renowned coach.

Coach Mac joined the Gee-Gees coaching staff in 2013. A native of Providence, Rhode Island, MacDermott was the head coach at Wesleyan College for sixteen years before joining the CFL ranks in 1992. He enjoyed a lengthy and successful CFL coaching career, had a two-year stint with the San Diego Chargers, and won three Grey Cups with Edmonton.

Head coach Jamie Barresi wanted to honor his mentor:  

“Our community was very fortunate and is very grateful to have had a man of his integrity, professionalism and competence. He was a dedicated family man, he inspired deep affection to everyone who met him and was a father figure to all of the players and members of the Gee-Gees team. He was a tremendous role model to everyone he touched, his contribution was more than significant and will not soon be forgotten.

Right to the end, his dedication and commitment to his craft was unparalleled. He was always studying, always searching for a way to learn something new, to make himself better, to make his players/team better. He possessed that rare combination as a coach – tough on the players on the field but warm and affectionate off the field – a friend to all.

He was an inspiration to me, a kindred spirit, someone I could always rely on for his loyalty and advice, win or lose.  I will miss him always, particularly on the long bus rides as he sat in the seat next to me, early in the morning when I picked him up, late at night when I brought him home and all of the time in between.  I will always reflect on his values, his work ethic and guidance for what it means to me and what it meant to our team. I am grateful to have known him and to have worked with him.”

The Gee-Gees football program and the University of Ottawa wish to convey their sincere condolences to the family and friends of Coach Mac.