Champions past and present celebrated at Canadian Paralympic Committee Hall of Fame and Sport Awards Ceremony


May 10, 2013, Toronto (ISN)- Before a sold out crowd this evening at Toronto’s Mattamy Athletic Centre, the Canadian Paralympic Committee celebrated champions past and present at the Paralympic Hall of Fame and Sport Awards Ceremony.

Honored in person tonight were the six 2013 inductees in to the Canadian Paralympic Committee Hall of Fame, announced last month:

Athletes Robert Easton (Victoria, B.C, originally from Edmonton, Alta.), Jennifer Krempien (Richmond, B.C., originally from St. Albert, Alta.), and Tim McIsaac (Winnipeg, Alta.)

Coach Tim Frick (Pender Island, B.C.)

Builders Janet Dunn (Victoria, B.C., originally from Ogema, Sask.), and John Howe (Brantford, Ont.)

Biographies and photos of Hall of Fame inductees are available here:

Initiated in 2000, the Canadian Paralympic Hall of Fame recognizes and celebrates those who have made a significant contribution to the growth and development of the Paralympic Movement in Canada. These individuals will be acknowledged within the Canadian Paralympic Hall of Fame Honoured Members section located in the Olympic and Paralympic Gallery at Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in Calgary. The Canadian Paralympic Committee holds an induction process every two years, during a non-Paralympic Games year.

Also announced and presented this evening were the prestigious CPC Sport Awards for 2012, including:

•  Best Games Debut: Summer Mortimer (Ancaster, Ont.), winner of two gold, one silver and one bronze medal in swimming at the London 2012 Paralympic Games

•  Best Team Performance: Men’s wheelchair basketball team, who went undefeated and won the gold medal at the London 2012 Paralympic Games

•  Best Male Athlete: Patrick Anderson (Fergus, Ont.), top scorer among all wheelchair basketball players at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, averaging 25 points per game, who led Team Canada to gold

•  Best Female Athlete: Michelle Stilwell (Parksville, B.C.), winner of gold and silver medals in athletics at the London 2012 Paralympic Games

•  Para-Development Coach: Chris Holden (Ottawa, Ont.): Accomplished grassroots program director and senior coach for para-alpine skiing, para-snowboarding, adaptive waterskiing and wakeboarding

•  Tim Frick Paralympic Coach Excellence: Jerry Tonello (Toronto, Ont.), Head Coach of the Men’s wheelchair basketball team that won the gold medal at the London 2012 Paralympic Games

Biographies and photos of Sport Awards recipients are available here:

The Canadian Paralympic Committee created the Sport Awards after the Vancouver 2010 Winter Paralympic Games in order to recognize outstanding athlete and team performances at the Paralympic Games, as well as excellence in coaching at both the high performance and development levels.


“The Paralympic movement has given me a lifetime of joy and accomplishment but really, the pleasure has been all mine. I’ve loved every single moment and continue to be involved.” – Tim Frick

“I want to thank all the people who gave me the opportunities over the last 40 years to be able to be part of this. I can’t say that when I was a university student and when I went out to volunteer at my first activity, that I had any kind of vision, we just kept trying to solve the issues as they came along. I want to thank everyone who allowed me to help and do the things I was able to do and for the honour of being inducted.” – Janet Dunn

“I’ve coached at the grassroots level for 47 years and I did it because I enjoyed it and I received every bit back from the athletes as they ever gave me. I was always concerned about the students who were not interested in sports, I thought they were really missing out. I wrote poems, I drove vans because that’s what coaches do. This is my Cooperstown and I am humbled.” – John Howe

“I was a 14-year-old kid who one day asked, “Can I go to the Paralympics?” And nobody said no, so I assumed that was yes. We started on a journey that no one truly knew how hard it would be. The medals and the records were nice, but I truly did want to figure out just how fast I could go. I’m also really aware that part of the value of sport is what it leaves you with afterwards. What it leaves you with is the ability to set goals, to persevere, to overcome challenge you didn’t even realize were challenges. Those skills served me well not only in sport but also throughout my career.” – Robert Easton

“There are so many people my teammates and my whole team would like to thank. Our coaching staff, all the team behind us, physios, all the sport centres, especially Ontario Sport Centre. Our team came up with a vision statement that we stood by: “Everybody, every day.” We took it to heart to get the gold medal in London.” – David Eng, on behalf of the Men’s wheelchair basketball team

“My athletes did a wonderful job. You’re only as good as a coach as your athletes’ final product on the court. I have to thank my athletes for getting the job done. We had a great run going in to London. Everybody bought in to the system and we started playing well. We started knocking off teams that year and we finished in London with a very focused performance.” – Jerry Tonello

“It really is more than sport. I was 13 and somebody came up to me and said “Hey kid, want to get a pass?” and that was my introduction to parsport. But what they should have said to me was “Hey kid, do you want the confidence to start your own company, the confidence to change the world?” That’s what they gave me. Thirty years later I’m looking back on it and I’ve lived the dream. I’ve taken athletes and volunteers who didn’t know they could participate in sport and seen that first spark. To be able to see them on the podium years later and know I was there that first day was a real privilege.”- Chris Holden

“I want to especially thank my husband, Mark, and my son, Kai, who have consistently believed in me and given up and sacrificed so much so that I can achieve my goals and my dreams in sport. I also want to thank my coach Peter Lawless who has always given me the most amazing direction for me to be able to reach my goals and dreams in sport.” – Michelle Stilwell

“I should say thanks to my coaches, teammates, and the staff, but “thanks” isn’t really the right word. “Congratulations” is a better one. Teams win together and lose together, and that goes for awards as well. So, congrats!” – Patrick Anderson

“There are so many teammates in this room and the strength and the commitment and the dedication from everybody have really enabled me to be here. To see my mom after I got that gold medal in Sydney was one of the best moments and to get that hug after I got that gold medal was speechless and the amount of support can’t be captured and can’t be counted. I really want to thank Tim Frick for teaching me the technical aspects of the game, but also teaching me leadership and teamwork and mentorship, and shaping who I am today.” – Jennifer Krempien

“I believe that without the challenge offered me by competitive swimming, I would not have become the person I am today, including a career with challenges, a loving family, and a community life. To quote Proust: “People wish to learn to swim and at the same time to keep one foot on the ground.” To everyone who supported me in taking the risk of losing through competitive swimming, thank you for allowing me to have both feet in the water.” – Tim McIsaac