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Photos: Local sports heroes inducted into hall of fame

NHL great Marcel Dionne was the guest speaker at the Valley East Sports Hall of Fame dinner

At the June 10 dinner marking the 25th anniversary of the Valley East Sports Hall of Fame, 12 new members were inducted, including the hall of fame’s founder, former Greater Sudbury city councillor Ron Dupuis.

The hall of fame, which now has more than 100 members, is a way to give back to the local sports community, whether they’re the volunteers who make it all happen or talented athletes themselves, Dupuis told Sudbury.com.

“Without the volunteers, without the sponsors who are willing to help pay for some of the teams, we would have nothing,” he said.

“The kids would not be able to participate in sports because it’s too expensive. It's all for the kids, it's to make sure that they are able to flourish and display their talents.

“Nobody is happier than a whole community when a son makes it to the NHL, or makes the OHL. It's a community that comes forward.”

The guest speaker at the event was Marcel Dionne, who has been named one of the 100 greatest players in NHL history. He shared some of the behind-the-scenes stories from his 18-season NHL career with those in attendance.

While Dionne made it to the big time in his sport, he said some of the people he has the most respect for in his life are people who make sports happen at a local level.

“They’re my heroes, and that’s what tonight’s celebration is all about,” he said. 

Among those inducted into the Valley East Sports Hall of Fame Saturday was Jordan Kilganon, a professional slam dunker.

Three other members of his family were also inducted into the hall of fame at the same time, including Grant Kilganon and Rick Kilganon for their work as fitness coaches, and Chase Kilganon for his work involvement in the sport of volleyball.

“Honestly, I think it's incredibly cool,” said Jordan Kilganon,.

“I grew up in the Valley, and my entire family's in the Valley. So this is a really special moment. You know, I grew up idolizing a lot of these people who are in the Hall of Fame, especially my dad. And now to be inducted in with him and the rest of my family is quite special.”

Another new hall of fame inductee is Craig Maki, a retired Greater Sudbury Police officer who has been heavily involved in hockey throughout his life, and currently sits on the Northern Ontario Hockey Association (NOHA) board of directors.

“It’s an honour and a thrill, to be quite honest,” Maki said.

Also inducted into the Valley East Hall of Fame on June 10 were Marc D’Amour (hockey), Bruce Vaillancourt (hockey), Jean-Yves Maillet (hockey referee), Lina Lacroix (swimming), Gord Ewin (hockey) and Bob Bellerose (hockey).

Heidi Ulrichsen is Sudbury.com’s associate content editor.


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Heidi Ulrichsen

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