Darryl Sittler is a true icon of the game. Forty-five years later, he still holds the record for most points by an individual in one game, when he made ten points (six goals and four assists) against the Boston Bruins. The record was set at the beginning of 1976, and since, it has remained the same. But Sittler is remembered for more than just one game.
He’s often considered one of the top 100 players of all time, and in 1989, he was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame. Stiller also played with Philadelphia Flyers and Detroit Red Wings, but he’s mostly known for his many years in Toronto, where he also served as a captain for six seasons.
Sittler is one of Toronto’s cult heroes, and at the beginning of the century, Maple Leafs president Ken Dryden wanted to honor Sittler in a special way.
They wanted to raise his No. 27 to the rafters, but there was a problem. Wendy, his wife of 30 years, was ill, so Darryl Sittler asked for the ceremony to be postponed for some time.
Wendy died three days after the banner was supposed to be raised, and Toronto told him that they were ready to do the ceremony whenever he was ready for it.
Sittler got to choose the date himself and was even involved in how the banner looked. When Sittler met the artist behind the banner, he asked for Wendy’s name to be on it. Sittler even had her name added in her own handwriting.
On Feb. 8, 2003, Sittler’s No. 27 was raised, with his beloved late wife’s name included. He stood with his three children, looked up, and cried.
”There was not a dry eye in the place or across Canada watching it,” he said. ”But that summed up everything in my life at that moment.”
Source: The Athletic.