Four Missionites were officially inducted into the District’s Sports Hall of Fame on April 19.
Doreen Black, Steve Bonnett, George Donatelli and Albert McMahon will all have plaques placed on the wall of the Mission Leisure Centre, and a trophy will be presented to them or their families.
“I’m thrilled to be able to present the 2020 Sports Hall of Fame inductees tonight,” said Acting Mayor Carol Hamilton. “All of these individuals cared deeply about Mission, its children and the benefits of sport.”
Black was known as the community’s “Mother of Hockey.” She was a driving force in not only the creation of the Mission Minor Hockey Association, but also the building of the first local ice rink.
A hockey referee and skating coach for over 20 years, Black received a National Service Award from Minor Hockey Canada, and was a lifetime member of the local association.
In 1974 she was granted Freeman of the City, the highest award the District of Mission can bestow. The province recognized her dedication to the service of children in 1980. She was named Mission’s Citizen of the Year in 1982.
She passed away in 1990.
Bonnett was an active member of the Mission Soccer Club for over 20 years, serving as a coach, referee, field coordinator, scheduler and tournament organizer. He was a longtime executive member and club president, and an annual youth soccer tournament, volunteer of the year award given out by the club, and a local soccer field are all named after him.
He passed away in 2005.
Donatelli spent half a century as a local, regional, national and international speed skating coach. Athletes under his tutelage went on to win provincial national, international, world and Olympic medals.
He spent over 25 years acting as a speed skating official and referee, both at the national and international level. A founding member of several Fraser Valley speed skating clubs, as well as helping establish a regional training centre, Donatelli also personally supported speed skaters with equipment, travel and registration costs.
He Coached Team BC for the Winter Games two times, mentored and trained coaches and officials, and was named speed skating coach of the year in 1988.
McMahon volunteered and generously sponsored sports in Mission for over 40 years through his involvement with McMahon Industries, the Mission Rotary Club, Mission City and District Board of Trade, Dewdney-Alouette Regional District, Mission Chamber of Commerce and the Mission Hospital Board.
He was the founder and donor of several high school scholarships, and championed sports giving time and money to support them.
McMahon was granted Freeman of the city in 1980, and was named Citizen of the Year in 1985 and 1992. He was the first Missionite to be presented with a Chamber of Commerce Lifetime Achievement Award.
Albert McMahon Elementary School bears his name to this day due his donation of 10 acres of land to the District.
He passed away in 1997.