Born and raised in Toronto, Billy's lifelong dream was to play for his hometown Maple Leafs. The dream became reality in two manners -- first, when he was signed by the Leafs' organization in 1950 and became a Marlboro in the junior ranks, then in 1955 when he joined the parent Maple Leafs of the NHL.
Billy was a dependable two-way center, and enjoyed three consecutive Stanley Cup championships with Toronto in 1962, 1963 and 1964. An avid photographer, he chronicled the celebrations in a book titled, "The Glory Years: Memoirs of a Decade - 1955-65."
In May 1965, Harris was traded to Detroit with Andy Bathgate and Gary Jarrett for Marcel Pronovost, Larry Jeffrey, Ed Joyal, Aut Erickson and Lowell MacDonald. A part-timer with the Red Wings, Harris spent 1966-67 with their AHL affiliate in Pittsburgh, helping the Hornets win the Calder Cup championship. The expansion Oakland Seals claimed Billy in the 1967 draft. During his second season with the fledgling franchise, Harris was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Bob Dillabough.
Billy coached the Canadian National Team during the 1969-70 season, then left the coaching ranks to pursue his degree at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, where he also served as hockey coach. After retiring, Billy Harris spent several years working for the Toronto Maple Leafs' alumni association before his death September 20, 2001, nine days shy of his 66th birthday.
Courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame