June 18, 2006
Catching up with Keith Hart
By BILLY POWERS - Calgary Sun
When it comes to a family being under the microscope, none in Calgary matches the famous Hart clan.
Over the years, every move of the wrestling family was recorded. Stories abound about the 12 children raised by Stu and Helen Hart as they went from child to adulthood.
I happened to run into Keith Hart this week and he revealed a couple of things I think you might find interesting.
For example, did you know Helen would not let any of the boys enter a wrestling ring professionally until they had a degree?
If you didn't get an education, you wouldn't be part of the program. Bret (The Hitman) Hart did break the rule, according to Keith. "By leaving town and becoming a superstar in Australia, Puerto Rico and Asia and when he came back, mom and dad had no choice but to let him wrestle because of his star status. But he was the only one," Keith said.
Keith recently retired after 27 years as a Calgary firefighter and how he joined the force is another tale.
His brother-in-law, B.J. Annis, suggested he apply because the department was looking for people. "I applied and was offered a chance to write the exam," said Keith, "but the test was on the same day I was leaving to wrestle in Germany and in those days, it was $280 a day which was huge coin.
"I chose to wrestle but as I left my apartment with luggage in hand, B.J. stood at the door and wouldn't let me go until I took the exam. I took it, then went to Germany and when I got back, I found out I'd been accepted. The key here is that mine was the last class for five years so if B.J. had not stopped me, I'd never have been a fireman. Best advice I ever got."
Keith, who will continue using his teaching degree as a substitute teacher, recently sold his house in Chaparral. He's now thinking about moving down to Montana where he bought several acres of land a few years back.