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Goalie Rumbough earned his fame at MOI Fantasy Camp

April 12, 2019
By ANDY FLYNN - Editor (aflynn@lakeplacidnews.com) , Lake Placid News

LAKE PLACID - Everyone knows goalie Stanley Rumbough at the Miracle on Ice Fantasy Camp, not just because he's the oldest, but because he gained a reputation as a save king in the net.

Rumbough, 71, of Greenwich, Connecticut, attended his fifth fantasy camp from March 31 to April 3 at the Olympic Center. He holds the record for the number of shutout periods - eight over the first and second seasons of camp. He even shut out 1980 Olympian John Harrington's team in two games during the inaugural season. Therefore, it was only fitting that the gold medalist return the favor.

"John Harrington broke my shutout record," Rumbough said.

Article Photos

Goalie Stanley Rumbough poses at the 5th annual Miracle on Ice Fantasy Camp.
(News photo β€” Andy Flynn)

Rumbough is as modest and approachable as the Miracle on Ice players and staff who coach and play with the fantasy campers, even though his roots come from American royalty.

They may not know that this man - Stanley Hutton Rumbough III - is the grandson of Post cereal heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post and her second husband, Wall Street stockbroker Edward Francis Hutton. They may not know that his mother was Dina Merrill (Nedenia Marjorie Hutton), an actress on television and in films such as "Operation Petticoat" (1959) with Cary Grant. They may not know that his father - Stanley Rumbough Jr. - was a special assistant in the White House for President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

"The reason he was on his personal staff was because my dad and a war buddy of his, a pilot, had started Citizens for Eisenhower, which was a grassroots movement that convinced Ike that he had half of a chance to win," Rumbough said. "Of course, he won, and then Charlie Willis and my dad were known as the Whiz Kids when they were in the White House."

Even with all that family history, Stanley Rumbough is just "Stanley" at the Miracle on Ice Fantasy Camp. Everyone seems to look up to him.

"So I, because of the shutout thing and because I'm always the oldest guy in camp, I have received some kind of notoriety," he said. "And so all the team knows me. They all call me by name."

Rumbough spent a lot of his youth living in Maryland while his father was working for President Eisenhower. They moved to New York City after his father got "fed up with government" and began working in the private sector. After spending grades 4-7 there, he was sent to St. Mark's boarding school in Massachusetts at age 13. That's where he found hockey.

It was always the goalie position for him, mainly because "I don't have to skate out."

Rumbough played hockey for five years until he graduated from St. Mark's in 1965. Then he took a break, putting his skates, pads and face mask away for 27 years.

"I've always loved this sport, but having lived in New York City was kind of difficult," he said. "There weren't a lot of rinks, and there is a problem carrying around equipment in a subway, especially for a goalie."

During this time, the U.S. hockey team beat the Soviet Union in the famous "Miracle on Ice" game and then won the gold medal against Finland during the 1980 Olympic Winter Games in Lake Placid. Where was Rumbough when they made history? Heli skiing in the Bugaboos in British Columbia.

"The lodge there is 30 miles in from nowhere," he said. "We didn't have any television. We didn't have telephones. All they had was a radio to the outside world. So the word came in that the American team had won the gold and all of us Americans there went, 'Yeah right. It's a joke. I mean, come on. It's impossible.' ... So when we got out, three or four days later, we're back in Calgary and we're asking around, 'Is it true?' And they said, 'Yeah, absolutely.' I said, 'What?!'"

In 1992, at age 45, Rumbough moved from New York City to Greenwich, and his life changed forever. He found hockey again.

"I got the bug, and I borrowed some equipment and I've been playing ever since," he said. "I played in the town league in Greenwich until it went defunct in 2000 and went out as the town champ. And then I started playing over in Stamford at the Twin Rinks in the house leagues there, men's league."

Rumbough owns a second home 30 miles from Lake Placid outside the village of Tupper Lake. In 2015, local business owner Mark Moeller said his daughter was working for the state Olympic Regional Development Authority and they had an event he might be interested in - the first MOI Fantasy Camp. So he signed up and has been attending ever since.

Now that he's a five-year veteran, what does Rumbough tell the rookies?

"Just to have a good time. It doesn't make any difference whether you win or not; it's all about participating and meeting the other guys and enjoying your three days here in a beautiful spot."

As for the 40th anniversary of the Miracle on Ice in 2020, Rumbough said he's not sure yet whether he'll be able to make it back for another fantasy camp, if it's held. It's not because of his age, even though it's becoming more challenging.

"It's not getting easier. I get a little stiff and can't move as fast as I used to, but hopefully I've gained a lot of knowledge, where to be at the right time," he said.

It's because three years ago Rumbough was diagnosed with a rare kind of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma called mantle cell lymphoma. He almost didn't make it last year because he was wrapping up a second cycle of chemotherapy in late January. He had a break between chemo sessions, and the fantasy camp was in that time period.

"It happened that you were allowed to do things if you feel up to it," he said. "So it was perfect. This was in the fourth week. So I came, and I was completely out of shape and huffing and puffing."

Rumbough was also dealing with a potential toe infection - which landed him in the hospital for nine days after chemo - and psuedogout, which made both of his feet tender.

"So I was lying there in bed for nine days straight and I thought rigor mortis had set in. I could hardly walk, and I was super stiff. And camp was coming up six weeks later, and I thought, 'Oh, this might not happen.' But it did. It worked out."

Rumbough is an architectural photographer and his first book will be released in June, "Behind the Privets: Classic Hamptons Houses," written by Richard Barons with a foreword by Alec Baldwin and preface by David Netto.

In the meantime, if there is a fantasy camp next year and Rumbough can make it, he'll be here in the net. Age doesn't seem to make a difference for the oldest MOI Fantasy Camper. He comes from good genes; his mother lived to be 93 and his father lived to be 97.

Besides, "I like to say I never grew up."

 
 
 

 

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