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The University of Minnesota Duluth

BRIDGE - Summer 2007, Volume 25, #1

Cameron Fryer: former UMD Hockey player returns to Duluth

Cameron and Mignon Fryer


Cameron Fryer '72 (BBA Business Administration) is back in Duluth. This former UMD hockey player from Saskatchewan, Canada, attended UMD from 1969-1972, during the days when the hockey team practiced on occasion at the old Curling Club. Something about those days resonated with Fryer, because after retiring from over 21 years in sales and marketing for Merrill Lynch in Newport Beach, California, Fryer and his wife, Mignon, have made Duluth their home.

It has often been said that "college days are the best days," and one might get that impression talking to Fryer. Because the scholarships were already distributed when he arrived at UMD as a freshman, the university arranged for free room and board in a local home. "That was really important to me," he said. "I left home at 15 to play hockey, so being part of a family meant a lot." Fryer lived with District Court Judge Patrick O'Brien and his family. Even after Fryer's first year, when he received a full scholarship and didn't need to live off campus any longer, he stayed in touch with the O'Briens.

Fryer compiled 40 goals and 62 assists in his three years at UMD for a total of 102 points -- one of only 49 players to do this in school history. "I remembered the great battles the team had with the Twin Cities campus," he said. "One memorable game was when UMD beat the Twin Cities 15-3 on their ice. We set several records that game."

After playing hockey for UMD, Fryer signed a professional contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs team and played in the minors for a couple of years, one year in Phoenix, and one year in Oklahoma City.

When Fryer quit playing hockey, he bought a house on a lake near Duluth, where he spent the next six years before moving to California. That changed in the early 1990s when he and his wife bought a home in Duluth and spent the summer months here. "Mignon convinced me that I was working too hard," he said. "She wanted me to retire." A few years ago they made the transition from California to living full-time in Duluth. He says they travel some, "But for spring, summer, and fall, we stay right here. Duluth is beautiful."

The couple stays busy restoring historic homes and are currently finishing up their second project. Fryer also stays active in the community. He is on the board of directors for the Miller-Dwan Foundation and was chair of their annual fundraiser for the past two years. He is also on the board of the Northland Country Club.

Fryer remembers, "Duluth was a warm and welcoming community; everyone made me feel at home." Good memories of UMD brought Fryer back.

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