(Above, Below) Cole Tennant of the Elk Valley Minor Hockey Association Atoms team scores against Creston, Saturday.  Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

(Above, Below) Cole Tennant of the Elk Valley Minor Hockey Association Atoms team scores against Creston, Saturday. Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

Youth strap on skates in memory of Hugh Twa

On Saturday, November 3, teams from around the Elk Valley and abroad gathered together to play hockey in memory of Hugh Twa, a man who impacted many in a positive way.

Twa, a coach, as well as the principal at the elementary and secondary school in Elkford, is remembered by many as a ‘forward thinking educator and administrator, who was very kid-centric.’

In a dedication to Twa at the Elkford Recreation Centre, Twa was described by youth as someone who believed in them.

“The epitome of a great leader is someone who makes others better,” read the dedication.

“Hugh made others feel more confident in themselves, you felt better about yourself in his presence, we learned teamwork, community, and began to understand that we were capable and obliged to contribute in a meaningful way. This mentorship was perhaps not fully grasped at the time but looking back the impact was clear and very meaningful.”

“The legacy of his coaching passion lives on with many past players or young mentored coaches and parents still volunteering with the Elk Valley Minor Hockey Association,” read the dedication.

Twa passed away in 2011 after a battle with cancer.

A local junior hockey tournament was chosen as the perfect dedication to the man who loved the game of hockey. Twa not only played varsity at the University of Alberta, as well as in Europe, he also coached a variety of age groups and multiple teams at once.

In total 10 teams: two pre-novice teams, two novice, two Atoms, two peewee and two midget teams competed in Elkford over the weekend. Teams travelled from as far as Idaho. All funds were donated towards cancer research.

“I like how all the people are here together,” said Organizer Crystal Tennant. “And the kids are all here having fun, running around … it’s just a good community event. There’s lots of people here that we wouldn’t normally see.”

Lee Wilm, head coach of the Elk Valley Elkford Atoms team, said that it was great to see so many teams out, and that it was a great way to remember Hugh.

“There’s not a person that’s been here this weekend that cancer hasn’t affected,” said Elk Valley Minor Hockey Association president Jason Dobson.

“It’s a bunch of people coming together to have fun, and hopefully raise a bunch of money for cancer research.”

The tournament raised $1436 for cancer research.

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The Elk Valley Minor Hockey Association Midget team celebrates after scoring against Coeur D’Alene, Saturday.  Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

The Elk Valley Minor Hockey Association Midget team celebrates after scoring against Coeur D’Alene, Saturday. Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

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