Five alumni to be inducted to BC Sports Hall of Fame

Five alumni to be inducted to BC Sports Hall of Fame

Author: BC Games Society/Thursday, December 11, 2014/Categories: 2015 News, Alumni

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BC Games alumni Leah Pells (Athletics), Denny Morrison (Speed Skating), and Karina LeBlanc (Soccer) were among the athletes named to by the BC Sports Hall of Fame as part of its 2015 class of inductees.  In addition, Team BC alumni Shelley Winter Andrews (Field Hockey) and Paul Kariya (Hockey) were also named as inductees.

See the full news release below.

BC Sports Hall of Fame to Induct 9 Individuals and 1 Team

Vancouver, B.C. (December 11, 2014) – The British Columbia Sports Hall of Fame has selected
9 individuals and one team for induction as part of its 2015 class.

Induction recognizes excellence in sport, contribution to sport and the impact on sport in British Columbia, in the categories of athlete, builder, team, pioneer, and media. After extensive review, discussion and debate, the Selection Committee submitted their recommendations to
the Board of Trustees of the BC Sports Hall of Fame who confirmed the 2015 slate of inductees. The Selection Committee is comprised of 13 individuals representing the BC sport community at large, members of the BC Sports Hall of Fame Board of Trustees and the media.

Honoured Member Tom Larscheid and Selection Committee member Tom Mayenknecht announced the 2015 induction class today in the Hall of Champions of the BC Sports Hall of Fame. The 2015 induction class includes:

In the athlete category, five athletes – Shelley Winter Andrews (field hockey), Garett Hickling (wheelchair rugby), Paul Kariya (ice hockey), Denny Morrison (speed skating), and Leah Pells (athletics). In the builder category, John Haar (baseball) and Denny Veitch (all-round: rugby, soccer, football) have been selected. Selected for induction in the pioneer category is Duncan Campbell (wheelchair rugby) and J. Paul McConnell in the media category. The BC Members of the 2012 Canadian Olympic Women’s Soccer Team has been selected. Selected for induction in the pioneer category is Duncan Campbell (wheelchair rugby) and J. Paul McConnell in the media category. The BC Members of the
2012 Canadian Olympic Women’s Soccer Team has been selected for induction in the team category (Karina LeBlanc, Sophie Schmidt, Christine Sinclair, Brittany Timko, Emily Zurrer. The 2015 Inductees will be formally inducted to the BC Sports Hall of Fame at the 47th Annual
Banquet of Champions presented by Canadian Direct Insurance at the Vancouver Convention
Centre on May 28th, 2015.
2015 BC Sports Hall of Fame Inductee – Short Bios


Shelley Winter Andrews – Field Hockey
•     Born and raised in Victoria.
•     One of Canada’s greatest field hockey players of all time.
•     Played twelve years on Canada’s national team, anchoring the defense.
•     Was the first Canadian woman to play in 100 international field hockey matches.
•     Co-captained Canada to 1983 World Cup silver medal, fifth place at 1984 Olympic Games, and 1986 World Cup bronze medal.

Garett Hickling – Wheelchair Rugby
•     Born in Mica Creek, BC and resided in Kelowna and Vancouver.
•     For two decades, considered one of the world’s most physically dominant and respected wheelchair rugby players.
•     Member of the Canadian national team for 17 years and a five-time Paralympian.
•     Helped Canada to one gold, four silver, and three bronze world championship or Paralympic medals during his career, including gold at the 2002 world championships and silver at the 2012 Paralympic Games.
•     Named MVP at the first three Wheelchair Rugby’s World Championships ever held (1995, 1998, and 2002).
•     Led the BC provincial team to 11 Canadian titles and two regional championships.

Paul Kariya – Ice Hockey
•     Born in Vancouver and raised in North Vancouver.
•     One of the greatest BC-born hockey players to play in the NHL.
•     Played 15 NHL seasons from 1994-2010 for the Anaheim Ducks, Colorado Avalanche, Nashville Predators, and St. Louis Blues, compiling 989 points in 989 regular season games.
•     Two-time winner of NHL’s Lady Byng Trophy for gentlemanly conduct and sportsmanship.
•     Selected to NHL’s first all-star team three times (1996, 1997, 1999) and second all-star team twice (2000, 2003).
•     Represented Canada at 1994 and 2002 Olympic Games, helping Team Canada to silver and gold medals respectively.

Denny Morrison – Speed Skating
•     Born in Chetwynd, BC and raised in Fort St. John
•     One of Canada’s most decorated speed skaters, sharing record for most Olympic speed skating medals (four) won by a male skater with the legendary Gaetan Boucher.
•     Represented Canada at three Olympic Games, winning silver in team pursuit in 2006, gold in team pursuit in 2010, and silver and bronze in 2014 in 1000m and 1500m respectively. The 2014 1000m silver medal came after teammate Gilmore Junio selflessly gave up his place in the race so Morrison could skate.
•     2008 and 2012 1500m world champion. 2009 World Cup overall champion in team pursuit.
•     Also accumulated four silver and three bronze world championship medals.
•     Established a 1500m world record of 1:42.01 in 2008.

Leah Pells - Athletics
•     Born in Vancouver and raised in Langley.
•     One of Canada’s best-ever female middle distance runners.
•     Three-time Canadian Olympian (1992, 1996, 2000), highlighted by a fourth-place 1500m finish at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, the best-ever finish for a North American woman in the event.
•     Won 1500m silver medal at 1999 Pan American Games in Winnipeg.
•     Represented Canada at six world track and field championships and three Commonwealth Games.
•     Winner of women’s division at 1993 Vancouver Sun Run.


John Haar – Baseball
•     Born and raised in Vancouver.
•     One of the most respected managers in Canadian baseball history.
•     Coached Canadian junior team to an international gold medal at 1991 world junior baseball
championships, Baseball Canada’s first international gold medal.
•     Managed the National Baseball Institute in Vancouver for 14 years, producing eight Canadian major league players including Matt Stairs and Corey Koskie.
•     Served as Canadian team manager at 1986 World Cup in Cuba, and helped Canada to qualify for 1988 Olympic Games.
•     Inducted into Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 2007.
•     Named Canada’s Coach of the Year in 1991 and International Baseball Federation’s top coach in 1992.

Denny Veitch – All-Round
•     Born and raised in Vancouver.
•     An influential BC builder in three different sports.
•     Outstanding rugby player for Canada despite losing his right arm at age five.  While touring Japan with a Canadian all-star team, he became a national celebrity.
•     Served as general manager of BC Lions from 1966-70. Prior to that, as Lions assistant general
manager from 1961-65, including 1964 Grey Cup championship.
•     Chairman of the 1973 Canada Summer Games in New Westminster.
•     Co-founder of Vancouver Whitecaps in 1973 and responsible for creating the ‘Whitecaps’
name. Served as team manager from 1973-77.
•     Served as manager of Rugby Canada’s senior men’s team from 1985-87, including the inaugural Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.
•     Sadly, passed away in 2011 at age 80.


2012 Canadian Olympic Women’s Soccer Team (BC Members)
•     Overcame a controversial semifinal loss to the US to win a dramatic bronze medal at the 2012
Olympic Games in London, defeating France 1-0 on a late goal.
•     Marked Canada’s first medal in a traditional summer team sport since 1936.
•     Burnaby’s Christine Sinclair, captain of the Canadian team, finished as the tournament’s top scorer with six goals.
•     Team Members (with hometowns in brackets): Karina LeBlanc (Maple Ridge), Sophie
Schmidt (Abbotsford), Christine Sinclair (Burnaby), Brittany Timko (Coquitlam), Emily Zurrer (Crofton).


Duncan Campbell – Wheelchair Rugby
•     Resided in Vancouver
•     Co-creator of the sport of ‘murderball,’ today known as wheelchair rugby, with four friends in a
Winnipeg gym in 1976.
•     The sport has developed into one of the world’s most popular and fastest growing wheelchair sports.
•     Moved to BC in 1986 and influenced the lives of thousands of BC athletes with a disability including many decorated Paralympians and a high percentage of BC’s wheelchair rugby players at all levels.
•     The Canadian wheelchair rugby national championship trophy, the Campbell Cup, is named in
his honour.
•     In 2013, received the prestigious Paralympic Order from the International Paralympic Committee.
•     Served in many key roles including member of the International Wheelchair Rugby Federation, national development director for the Canadian Wheelchair Sports Association, and committee member for the 2010 World Wheelchair Rugby Championships.


J. Paul McConnell
•     Born and raised in Ladner, BC.
•     Best known as long-time baritone voice of BC Lions radio play-by-play for nearly 20 years on several BC stations, including CKNW.
•     43-year broadcasting career began in 1963 with radio station CKLG.
•     Worked for radio station CKWX from 1969-79.
•     Key member of CBC Vancouver sports department from 1979-89.
•     Worked for CKNW from 1989 until his retirement in 2006.
•     Presented with the CFL Commissioner’s Award in 2007 for his contribution to the Canadian Football League


About the BC Sports Hall of Fame
The BC Sports Hall of Fame is located at Gate “A” of BC Place with an inspiring Hall of Champions, Vancouver 2010 Gallery and many other exceptional galleries. The BC Sports Hall of Fame, a non-profit society, is the ‘go to’ organization for BC sport heritage. For over 40 years, we have honoured BC’s teams, builders, athletes, pioneers, and media through the annual induction ceremony the Banquet of Champions. To date 354 individuals and 57 teams have been inducted onto the BC Sports Hall of Fame. The collection of the BC Sports Hall of Fame and Museum includes over 25,000 artifacts and 20,000 archival documents representing 100 years of sporting accomplishments in British Columbia. In everything it does, the BC Sports Hall of Fame honours, educates, and inspires through the Hero In You Youth Education Programs. The BC Sports Hall of Fame is open daily at Gate A of BC Place from 10am-5pm. Go there. Experience. Be proud. Be inspired. For more information please visit: follow us on twitter@bcsportshall and like us on facebook/bcsportshall

Media Contacts:
Cecilia Olmos
Media, Events Coordinator
BC Sports Hall of Fame
604-687-5520 extension 24

Allison Mailer
Executive Director
BC Sports Hall of Fame
604-687-5520 extension 32
778-839-8576 cell

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