Hershey Bears Alumni: August 2007

Hershey Bears of the past. A Blog devoted to the past players of the American Hockey Leagues Hershey Bears. Once a week a former Bear will be profiled. Learn about the individuals who made the Bears the greatest team in minor league hockey history.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Goran Hogosta

There are not to many pre-1980 Hershey Bears living outside North America. The vast majority of players came from Canada and a few from America thrown into the mix. During the 1977-78 AHL season the Hershey Bears employed 7 different goalies (one more than the 2006-07 season).
Swedish native Goran Hogosta was one of them. Today Hogosta lives in Falun, Sweden with his wife. They are proud parents of a son and daughter and at last count two grandchildren.
It is hard to imagine many HersheyPark Arena fans knew the fabulous international career of Hogosta. The goalie only played 23 games in Hershey. As a member of Team Sweden he was named "Best Goalie" at the 1977 World Championships in Vienna. He took home medals at the 1975, 1976, and 1977 World Championships before signing with the New York Islanders.
In fact, he only played nine minutes for the Islanders- sharing a 9-0 shutout of the Atlanta Flames with Billy Smith.
Hogosta was eventually traded to the Quebec Nordiques where he played just over 20 games before returning to Sweden to conclude his career.
An avid hunter and fisherman, Hogosta is employed as a salesman for Carlsberg Brewery. Hogosta enjoyed Hershey as it reminded him of the small town of Leksand (Sweden) where he played many years.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Ferny Flaman

Fern Flaman's Hall of Fame career came through Hershey during the 1946-47 season. Flaman spent 38 games with the Bears before getting the call to the NHL with the Boston Bruins. The Bears went on to win the 1947 Calder Cup Championship and Flaman went on to a 910 game career on the blueline with the Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs.
According to a 2002 interview with Flaman, "Hershey was a beautiful little town. I have fond memories of the aroma of the chocolate factory and of the Community Inn."
The Regina, Saskatchewan native broke into professional hockey with the Bears and scored 12 points for the Bears. Previously, Flaman played in the Eastern League with the Boston Olympics.
Today Flaman lives outside of Boston in the town of Westwood. He is married with two children and several grandchildren.
After his Hall of Fame playing career Flaman moved to the college coaching ranks with Northeastern University for 20 years. Currently he is a Special Assignment Scout with the New Jersey Devils.

Monday, August 13, 2007

George Swarbrick

Not many former professional hockey players wind up in Nebraska. Former Hershey Bears forward George Swarbrick is one of them. The Moose Jaw, Sask native played a single season with the Bears in 1970-71. He split the year between Hershey and the NHL Flyers. In 24 games with the Bears Swarbrick scored 10 goals and handed out 8 assists. The 1970-71 season also marked Swarbrick's last run and the National League.
In 132 NHL games with the Flyers, Seals and Penguins Swarbrick scored 42 points. He played the majority of his AHL games with the rival Baltimore Clippers. Swarbrick also spent five seasons in the Western League an three more in the North American League.
Now living just south of Omaha, Swarbrick runs his own lighting business although he anticipates retiring in a couple years.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Brad Palmer

Coming out of junior in 1980 Brad Palmer had the hardest shot known to Western Hockey League goalies. The Victoria Cougars forward scored 45 times during the 1979-80 season. Palmer was drafted in the first round of the NHL draft by the Minnesota North Stars. Big things were expected for the talented Western Canadian.
But something happened on the way to NHL stardom. The goalies were better, the league was faster and it wasn't as easy to get that rocket shot off.
Palmer spent two and a half season in the NHL with the North Stars and Boston Bruins before spending a year in Hershey. Palmer scored 25 goals for the Bears in 1983-84 and averages almost a point a game. However, the season in Hershey proved to be his last in North America. Palmer spent the remainder of the 80's putting up decent numbers in Finland, Germany and Austria.
Today, Palmer is married with three children and resides back in Victoria. He still manages to take a break a couple times a week from his electrical business to lace up the skates.