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Former U-M Great MacFarland Passes Away at 79
Bill MacFarland

Aug. 12, 2011

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Former University of Michigan ice hockey player Bill MacFarland (1954-56) passed away at the age of 79 on Friday, Aug. 12, in Scottsdale, Ariz. MacFarland captained the Wolverines to back-to-back national championships (1955, '56). He was a three-time All-American (1954-56), one of only three U-M players to achieve the feat.

MacFarland lettered in each of his three seasons playing for head coach Vic Heyliger. MacFarland's teams earned a record of 53-13-4. He was also a member of the 1955 NCAA All-Tournament team.

MacFarland was inducted into the University of Michigan Athletic Hall of Honor in 2009. Additionally, he is a member of the U-M Hockey Dekers Club Hall of Fame.

Following his U-M career, MacFarland spent 10 complete seasons playing in the WHL, earning the MVP award in 1962. He then spent four seasons coaching in the WHL and another three years as the league president. His final hockey venture led him to the WHA, where he co-owned the Phoenix Roadrunners before serving as league president and legal counsel.

During his WHL days with the Seattle Totems, MacFarland graduated from the University of Washington's law school. He eventually got out of hockey and utilized his law degree while working for Sterling International for 17 years.

MacFarland is survived by his wife, Sandy, three children -- Dede, Butch and Mary Beth -- and siblings Sandra Brewer and John MacFarland.


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