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Jun 2014 17

Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame Inductees

Posted in Featured, Sports

The Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame proudly welcomed four new members with an announcement on Tuesday at the Kelowna Museum.

In November, all four will be officially enshrined in the Hall.  The four inductees are:

In the Builder Category – Gillian Thomson was and is one of the driving forces the Central Okanagan Sailing Association since the mid-1980’s.   While winning gold and silver medal at the Hobie 18 World Championships and Pan American Games, Thomson was growing the sport in Kelowna.  She’s gathered Provincial, National and International recognition for her Learn to Sail & Disabled Sailing Program.  “Thank you to my fellow sailors at the central Okanagan sailing association who nominated me for this honour and for their help with my achievements in this sport.  We are the only club in Canada to win best in the country twice from the National Sport Authority Sail Canada.”

Ryan talked with Gillian following the ceremony, see below …

In the Team Category – The 2004 Kelowna Rockets won the Memorial Cup on home ice after going undefeated during the tournament and winning the WHL regular season.  Current Assistant Coach Dan Lambert was at the ceremony to represent the organization.  “That team in 2004 certainly set the bar high for our organization, it’s something that we try to emulate every single year and when you see the likes of Shea Weber, Josh Gorges, and guys of that magnitude that played on that team, they are pretty good role models for the guys we have today.”

In the Athlete Category – Glen Mervyn won a silver medal at the 1960 Olympic Summer Games in Rome in the Men’s 8 rowing event, the lone Canadian medal.  He coached the Men’s Pairs Rowing Team to a gold medal at the 1964 Olympic Games in Tokyo.  At age 50 he became a National and World cycling champion in his age category.  He passed away in 2000 at the age of 63. His wife Christina says, “I think he’d be trilled, quietly thrilled, but the kids are just over the moon.”

In the Builder Category – Mike & Brenda Van Tighem known as Mr. and Mrs. Track & Field.  They helped form the Kelowna Track & Field Club, built the Jack Bow Track Meet into the premier event in Western Canada and coached several athletes to success on the track including an Olympic berth, a World Champion and a junior Pan American Games Champion.

All four inductees will officially enter the Central Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame on Thursday November 20 during the Induction Breakfast.


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