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Kerry Fraser
Born May 30, 1952 (1952-05-30) (age 57)
Sarnia, Ontario
Nationality  Canada
Occupation NHL official (1973 - 2010)
Children Marcy Dumas

Kerry Fraser (born May 30, 1952, in Sarnia, Ontario) is the most senior referee in the National Hockey League, having joined the National Hockey League Officials Association on September 1, 1973, and officiating his first game in the 1980–81 season.[1] Fraser's father, Hilton "Hilt" Fraser, had him skating at 15 months old[2], chasing pucks at 11, and refereeing by age 15.[3] At just 5 feet 7 inches (1.7 m) tall, Fraser says that his height contributed to his longevity in the league by forcing him to "develop techniques to ... avoid being hit"[4]

He has called 1,700 regular season games and over 250 Stanley Cup playoff games since joining the league in 1980.[1] Fraser also officiated the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, which was the first Olympic tournament to feature NHL participation.

He was also one of the last three NHL officials covered by the grandfather clause that allowed him to go without a helmet, thus allowing his signature bouffant hairstyle. However, with the ratification of the new NHL Officials Association collective bargaining agreement on March 21, 2006, all officials, including Fraser, are now required to wear a helmet.[5]

Since the 1994–95 NHL season, Fraser wears uniform number 2, a number he said he chose "Because my wife is number 1."[6]

Fraser missed the beginning of the 2006–07 season while recovering from an incident in September 2006. He was helping his daughter move and was carrying a television down the steps when he lost his footing; his big toe was shattered.[7] Before returning to referee NHL games, Fraser officiated some AHL games alongside his son, Ryan Fraser.[8] In November 2006, TSN's James Duthie, along with Kerry Fraser, created a short mock interview/documentary claiming that Fraser missed the start of the season because he was afraid that wearing a helmet would mess up his hair.[9] Fraser's first game back with the NHL was Tampa Bay Lightning at Boston Bruins on November 30, 2006.

Fraser will retire from officiating after the NHL 2009–10 season.[10]

Awards

Fraser was voted the "most consistent" referee in a December 2005 poll[11] of NHL players by The Hockey News.[12]

References

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