Judy Kay-Wolff

A bad week for the World of Bridge

I was saddened to learn of John Sutherlin‘s passing a few days ago.  Some of my most pleasurable moments spent in Dallas when Bobby and I were first wed were having a few dinners with Peggy and John.  He was one of the most popular and respected representatives of our game.

And .. moments ago I learned about the death of one of Norman and Edgar’s closest teammates ..  Eric Murray (partnered by Sami  Kehela) .. Canada’s Great Warriors.  For nearly thirty years after the evening  sessions, as a ritual, we would gather in Edgar’s suite for delicious snacks and wine accompanied by interesting, candid discussions after the final board .. with lots of laughs .. but NEVER an unkind word!



Ray LeeMay 25th, 2018 at 3:57 pm

Yes, sad indeed. Eric will be greatly missed. You can get some sense of the flavour of the man by reading this article (second part is in English).


Sami and Eric had one of the great partnerships, carrying Canada to world championship medals on more than one occasion.

Judy Kay-WolffMay 25th, 2018 at 4:51 pm

Hi Ray,

I could not begin to thank you enough for sharing the incredibly comprehensive account of Eric’s illustrious career. Not only were Murray-Kehela a sensational partnership .. but great fun to be with ..extremely ethical and a credit to our majestic game .. which could not be said of many successful players of any era. Believe me, I know .. as I watched much serious competition for decades when they teamed up with Norman and Edgar.

The article you included is a MUST READ for all. Thanks for sharing.

Our best to you and Linda. We miss you.



Mac kennedyJune 5th, 2018 at 2:05 am

While I never played with or against Mr Murray I fondly recollect the Easter Toronto regional. In those days swiss teams were win loss tie and the huge swiss could not decide a winner after 8 rounds and a bonus ninth round was needed. We would Rush to finish round 8 to get a good seat at the Murray- Kehela table for round 9. Always A1. We were never disappointed

Judy Kay-WolffJune 5th, 2018 at 6:20 am

Hi Mac,

Eric and Sami were indeed special. I have decades of fond remembraces of a first class partnership .. IN EVERY WAY! I cherish my times spent with them over the decades!

Mac kennedyJune 6th, 2018 at 1:37 am

Hi Judy coming to Phoenix this year?

Judy Kay-WolffJune 7th, 2018 at 6:29 pm

Don’t do much traveling other than local events. Vegas has so much to offer. Busy, busy, busy! Perhaps we will see each other at the LV NABC NEXT YEAR.

Ray RaskinJune 18th, 2018 at 7:48 pm

Dear Judy,
I have been out of touch the last 9 months because of illness. Could you tell me what’s going on with ACBL? Thanks.

Judy Kay-WolffJune 18th, 2018 at 10:55 pm

Hi Ray, my longtime Philly friend!

Sorry to hear of your recent illness. Hope you are on the way to full recovery. You are not the only one. I fell on Thursday, hit my head on a marble sink and broke my nose in three places. It could have been worse. I look like the Lone Ranger with a black mask surrounding my eyes! Seeing the otologist tomorrow to learn if the swelling is down enough to set a date for surgery .. and eventually plastic surgery.

As far as the ACBL, we have not been to an NABC (except locally) in about eight years (though I am partnered by Bobby in all local Sectionals and Regionals and at the local club twice a week). Lucky me!

Bridge, IMO, has been faltering .. going in the wrong direction. The focus is on ridiculous avalanches of masterpoints, raised card fees for special games, etc. — with little done by the ACBL to get official teaching into the public schools in Zone 2. No doubt you remember that because of Bobby’s trip to China in the mid 80s, he convinced the powers on high to introduce it formally into the school system there. It did take a while …. but because of him .. TWO HUNDRED MILLION children have been getting their feet wet on the ground floor AND eleven other European nations have adopted the same philosophy. So. In answer to your question ..NOTHING GREAT.

Regards from Bobby,


paul croninJune 19th, 2018 at 3:32 pm

Hi Bobby & Judy,

Sorry to hear about your fall, Judy – hope things get back to normal OK.

The Globe & Mail, a Toronto newspaper ran a story following Eric’s death –

you can find it at


I especiallly liked the picture of Eric in the article – classy, like bridge used to be – reminded me of the “old days” at Kate Buckman’s bridge club in Toronto where a jacket and tie were mandatory.


Judy Kay-WolffJune 19th, 2018 at 5:43 pm

Hi Paul,

Loved the detailed article you referenced about Eric. The writer capsulized his style, habits, personality, humor, jibes, talent, maneuvers .. above and beyond. A well deserved tribute to a universal bridge hero! I’ll close by saying, it brought a smile to my lips when he referenced the Blue Team. Hmmmm! Well, that’s another story.

Thanks for sharing, Paul. Stay in touch!



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