Bill Barilko disappeared that summer,
he was on a fishing trip.
The last goal he ever scored
won the Leafs the cup
They didn’t win another until 1962,
the year he was discovered.
I stole this from a hockey card,
I keeped tucked up under
my fifty mission cap, I worked it in
to look like that
The song’s lyrics describe the mysterious disappearance of deceased Toronto Maple Leafs hockey player Bill Barilko. Barilko, who donned the blue and white Maple Leaf sweater for five seasons, scored the Stanley Cup clinching goal for the Leafs over rivaled Montreal Canadiens in the 1951 cup finals. Four months and five days later, Barilko climbed into a small, single-engine airplane with friend and dentist, Henry Hudson. The plane disappeared between Rupert House and Timmins, Ontario, leaving no trace of Barilko or Hudson.
Eleven years later, on June 7, 1962, helicopter pilot Gary Fields discovered the plane wreckage roughly 100 kilometres (60 miles) north of Cochrane, Ontario. Barilko was finally laid to rest in his home town of Timmins, the same year that the Maple Leafs won their next Stanley Cup.
The song’s lyrics also reference the honorary “fifty mission cap”, mentioned in the song’s title. The fifty mission cap was the leather hat given to the aces of the Allied airforces in World War II to signify their participation in 50 aerial missions.
I’ve always imagined that Gary Fields was wearing his Fifty Mission Cap as he looked for, and eventually spotted, the wreckage — but then he wouldn’t have a hockey card that explained the Stanley Cup drought and the Leafs winning again in ’62/’63… and I get a little worried that the “Fifty” part of the song might mean Toronto needs to wait another 9 years to win the Cup.
Does anyone know who scored the winning goal for the Leafs in 1967?
Anyhow, this song gets the #1 spot because at least three times, the lyrics is repeated: “Won the Leafs the Cup…” Good times.