The heart of the rink
La Scie remembers Neil Ward with legacy hockey tournament
A man who gave freely of his time to the people and youth of La Scie has been remembered through his passion, hockey.
The first annual Neil Ward Midget Legacy Tournament was held Nov. 30 – Dec. 2, in the midget division, with three teams – La Scie, Baie Verte, and Springdale – taking part in the Cape St. John Arena event.
Ward passed on June 27, at the age of 52, and Nancy Thomas, with the La Scie’s Minor Hockey Association, said as soon as the season started, the association and its young hockey players wanted to do something to honour the memory of Ward.
Along with coaching minor hockey, Ward was a past president of the La Scie’s minor hockey association and was a member of the La Scie Jets, which won the Herder in ‘93-‘94.
Thomas couldn’t help but get emotional when speaking of Ward.
“I don’t even know how to describe how good this man was,” Thomas said. “You can go on and on about his involvement with the community, and you can go on and on about his involvement in hockey.”
And whenever you entered his shop, co-owned with his brother, she said Ward would take the time to chat with customers and spoke with youth about hockey.
In bringing forward the tournament, she said, Ward’s memory packed the arena.
“The stadium was full, and all of his family came out,” she said. “Neil was the heart of this rink, and for his family to all come out, I think it was healing for them.”
Members of the family contacted didn’t wish to be interviewed, as they are still grieving the passing of their loved one.
Members of the La Scie Jets midget team, raise their sticks to former coach Neil Ward, who passed earlier this year, as they honoured at the first annual Neil Ward Midget Legacy Tournament at the Cape St. John Arena, Nov. 30 – Dec. 2.
With family members in attendance, residents gathered at the Cape St. John Arena, to honour Ward during the tournament.