Vern Eville

Vern Eville- 1932   (1910-1973)
Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1988


One of the greatest athletes ever to grace the playing fields of Acadia University was Vern Eville, a Wolfville High School graduate who starred in basketball, English rugby and track and field.

He performed brilliantly at centre for the 1930 varsity basketball squad that defeated Dalhousie Tigers, Saint John Trojans and Windsor Collegiate Alumni on the way to a berth against New Westminster in the national finals held in Wolfville. On that historic occasion –the first time that a team from this region had reached the championship game –Vern and teammates were applauded for their valiant efforts against a very strong British Columbia aggregation.

As a member of the rugby’s half-line squad he starred for an Acadia club that seriously challenged the legendary Halifax Wanderers for tri- province honours.

Yet, it was as a track and field performer that he truly shone, being particularly outstanding in the quarter-mile, pole vault and high jump events. Following record-breaking performances at Maritime Junior Championship events in ’28 and ’29, he won both the 110 metre hurdles and 400 metre run at the 1930 senior championships held in Halifax. For his efforts he joined other provincial greats –Reg Beazley, Howie Ryan, George Irwin and Tiny Herman –on a five-man Nova scotia team.

Subsequently on the track at the University of Toronto, he seriously challenged future Olympian star Alex Wilson, of Montreal, for supremacy in the 400 metre event. Selected to the Canadian team that was to participate in the first British Empire Games, he contracted polio just a few days before the official opening in Hamilton, Ontario –bringing a sudden and tragic ending to a brilliant athletic career.

Following dismissal from the hospital, he soon resumed classes at Acadia, from which he graduated in the spring of 1932, amidst one of the greatest ovations ever given an Acadia grad.

It is an honour to induct posthumously to Acadia’s sports Hall of Fame, Mr.Vern Eville.