The 2020 BC Sports Hall of Fame inductees, back row, from left, are: Cleve Dheensaw, Robin Bawa, Chris Hebb, Alex Stieda, Brent Johnson. Front: Kathy Newman, Sonja Gaudet, Gerri Tarchuk, Carol Mitchell, Valerie Johnson, Kirk McLean. (Photo submitted)

Vancouver Island south Asian sports pioneer honoured

Duncan-raised hockey named to the BC Sport Hall of Fame

A hockey player from Duncan who got his start at Fuller Lake Arena in Chemainus is among the 2020 induction class for the BC Sports Hall of Fame.

Bawa is being honoured in the pioneer category as the first Indo Canadian to play in the National Hockey League. He suited up for four NHL teams over the years: the Washington Capitals, Vancouver Canucks, San Jose Sharks and Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

Robin Bawa gained prominence as a youth in the Fuller Lake Minor Hockey Association’s rep system. His frequent coach during those development years was Jack Rochon of Chemainus.

Bawa is proud of his heritage and the role hockey played early in his life.

“My family has a long history in Duncan, with my grandfather settling down in Paldi in 1906 and then my dad and I both being born and raised in Duncan,” he indicated.

“My fondest memories come from my early years playing association hockey for the Fuller Lake Flyers in Chemainus. Having great friends as teammates, such as Doug Bodger and Richard Hajdu, was quite inspiring. My goal back then was just to get an opportunity to play for the Fuller Lake Jr. B Flyers, as the NHL was not even on the radar at the time.

“Being from a small town on Vancouver Island and now being inducted into the BC Sports Hall of Fame is a huge honour not only for myself, but my family as well. I hope this inspires our young to dream big and let their passion dictate their path of success.”

Bawa was inducted into the North Cowichan/Duncan Sports Wall of Fame in 2012.

The 2020 BC Sports Hall of Fame induction class, announced Oct. 29 in Vancouver, also includes: five athletes, three builder-coaches, one team, one media member and the W.A.C. Bennett Award winner.

Athletes named to the hall are: Sonja Gaudet (wheelchair curling); Alex Stieda (cycling); Jeff Francis (baseball); Brent Johnson (football); and Kirk McLean (hockey).

Builders-coaches include: Harry White (golf); Bill Mitchell (wrestling); and Valerie Johnson (trampoline gymnastics).

The team being inducted is the 1979-80 University of Victoria Vikings in men’s basketball

Team members include: Ted Anderson, Bill Chapman (manager), Reni Dolcetti, Jim Duddridge (assistant coach), Kelly Dukeshire, Bruce Hamilton, Chris Hebb, Craig Higgins, Ian Hyde-Lay, Gerald Kazanowski, Gregg Kazanowski, Tom Narbeshuber, Eli Pasquale, Ken Shields (head coach), Billy Turney-Loos, Norm Vickery (assistant coach) and Mickey Welder.

In a bittersweet twist to the announcement, Pasquale died of cancer Monday at the age of 59.

Rounding out the Class of 2020 is Cleve Dheensaw in the media category and W.A.C. Bennett Award winner Kathy Newman.

“Our Class of 2020 is a terrific cross-section of the personalities and teams that make the history, heritage and culture of sport in British Columbia so notable and inspiring for the next generation of young people in B.C.,” noted Tom Mayenknecht, chair of the BC Sports Hall of Fame.

The honoured members will be officially inducted and celebrated at the Induction Gala, Thursday, June 4, 2020 at the Vancouver Convention Centre.

 

Robin Bawa’s plaque from his 2012 induction into the North Cowichan/Duncan Sports Wall of Fame. (Photo submitted)

One of the National Hockey League teams Robin Bawa suited up for was the Washington Capitals. (Photo submitted)

The Anaheim Mighty Ducks were one of four NHL stops for Robin Bawa. (Photo submitted)

Just Posted

Victim of downtown Courtenay assault dies from injuries

Person of interest identified by RCMP

‘Actors can play any roles’: Debate over ‘colour-blind’ casting after Victoria lawsuit

Tenyjah Indra McKenna filed a complaint over racially-motivated casting

Talks between Western Forest Products and union break down

No more negotiations imminent between United Steelworkers 1-1937 and company

Farmers worry about future of water in Vancouver Island watershed

Some water licences restricted for first time last summer in Cowichan Valley’s Koksilah region

A white Christmas not likely for southern Vancouver Island

Snow could be in the forecast for mid to late January, early February, says meteorologist

VIDEO: UBC exchange students offered $1,000 to help with leaving Hong Kong

The university said 31 of its students were attending four universities in Hong Kong

Woman calls 911 to say she was late for train, asks Ontario police for ‘emergency ride’

Peel Regional Police received more than 180,000 improper calls so far this year

Saanich mayor urges premier to tweak road speeds in an ‘epidemic of road crash fatalities’

Haynes cites ICBC and provincial documents in letter to John Horgan

It could take you 218 years to save up for a house in this B.C. city

It would take 27 years in the most affordable city in the Lower Mainland

Petition calls for clinical pathology testing to return to Campbell River Hospital

North Island MLA Claire Trevena presented to the B.C. Legislature on Wednesday… Continue reading

Ballenas Whalers advance to junior varsity Subway Bowl B.C. title game

Parksville squad will play for provincial high school football crown

Infants more vulnerable to measles than previously thought: Canadian study

Babies typically don’t receive the measles vaccine until they are 12 months old

Shatner, Obomsawin among 39 inductees to Order of Canada today

Shatner is being given one of Canada’s highest civilian honours for his 60-year career

UPDATED: Four arrested after report of shots fired in Nanaimo

RCMP arrest four suspects in high-risk takedown in Cedar

Most Read