Hockey volunteers honoured

By Geoff Lee

February 9, 2016 10:13 AM

The Lloydminster Bobcats and the K40 Club of retired Kinsmen feted two long time hockey volunteers before Friday’s home game against the Whitecourt Wolverines.
Plaques and hoodies were presented to Marcel Courchesne and Wade Enger in recognition of their commitment and dedication to Lloydminster hockey.
“It’s been way overdue for these two guys because they’ve put a lot into hockey in the community,” said K40 rep Dale Cross prior to the ceremony.
Enger and Courchesne are known not to blow their own horns for all they have done.
“It’s just an award,” said Enger
“They figure we deserve it, so what the heck.”
Enger served as a trainer for the Border Kings and various other hockey teams for 39 years before hanging up his hat.
“I am retired from hockey,” he said in advance of the game.
“I spent my time at the rink.”
Courchesne has been associated with the Bobcats for about 15 years and the Border Kings long before that keeping team stats.
“I am still helping the Jr. A hockey team,” he said.
“Now I help with the penalty box.”
Cross recalled the idea to recognize the volunteerism of Courchesne and Enger dates back five years when he was in Vernon with Vern Belsheim, former general manager of the Blazers.
He said Gord Thibodeau, the current coach and GM of the Bobcats happened to be in Vernon the same day and they all talked about doing something for Courchesne and Enger.
“We were surprised that no one had done anything yet,” said Cross who played with the Border Kings 30 years ago.
“So I moved back to Lloyd a year ago and joined the K40 club and brought it up, and we voted it in to do something for Marcel and Wade.”
As a trainer Enger said his job was to prepare hockey sticks, re-tape them, put the sweaters up, get the bottles ready and get the coaches’ stuff ready “and that’s basically it.”
He said the one player who stands out in his memory is Kent Staniforth who played for the Moose Jaw Warriors in the Western Hockey League. “He was coaching the Border Kings and I trained him when he played Jr. A,”  said Enger.
Enger said over the years he also attended to a few cuts and few injuries sustained by players.
“I learned how to tape shoulders and wrists and ankles and knees,” he said.
Enger now 61 was born and raised in Lloydminster and works as a janitor at Bea Fisher Enterprises Ltd.
He said he’d be at the arena for the award with his two sisters then they’d be off to Edmonton.
“It can’t be long. It’s got to be fast and quick,” he said.
“I have retired from going to the rink — I’ve spent my time going to the rink.”
Courchesne, 58, works two half-days a week at Can-do Auto & Lube and has been a hockey volunteer for about 25 years.
He said he started keeping stats for the Blazers in 1991 at the request of Bill Kondro, former team president and GM.
One of his fondest memories was having his ticket drawn to see the Calgary Flames play the Toronto Maple Leafs while the Blazers were in cowtown playing the Royals.
“Calgary won that game 2-0,” he said with a statistician’s memory.

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