Ron Flockhart and sister LaVerne – holding her grandson, Conner – were at the Sicamous and District Recreation Centre for the unveiling of a sign honouring brother Rob Flockhart on June 6, 2021. (Contributed)

Ron Flockhart and sister LaVerne – holding her grandson, Conner – were at the Sicamous and District Recreation Centre for the unveiling of a sign honouring brother Rob Flockhart on June 6, 2021. (Contributed)

District of Sicamous looks to honour local hockey legend Rob Flockhart

Proposed street naming policy amendment also sparked by longtime volunteer Lloyd Gavel

Though their hockey cards said they’re from Smithers, the Flockhart brothers always called Sicamous home.

Retired NHL’er Ron Flockart was at the June 8 Sicamous council meeting to speak to a request from his family to see something in Sicamous named after Ron’s older brother Rob, who died in January 2021.

Rob’s hockey career included playing for Canada in the 1975 World Junior Championships, and five seasons in the NHL, playing for the Vancouver Canucks and the Minnesota North Stars. Rob and Ron also started the Flocky Hockey hockey school in Sicamous.

Ron explained their family moved from Smithers to Sicamous in 1969 so their father could take a job with the highways department.

“My sister came here and then she left and went away; my brother went to school for a year or two here and then he moved away for hockey and I did the same thing…” said Ron. “When you play a sport in cities, you usually end up staying in that city. But we never did. We always came home… We bragged about our little town of Sicamous all the time.”

Ron reflected on the overwhelming support in the community for the construction of what is now the Sicamous and District Recreation Centre, where he and Rob began the community’s first hockey school.

“It was really rewarding for us to see the Shea Webers, the Cody Fransons, the Kris Beechs come and let Robbie and me teach them… We maybe helped them along the way,” said Ron.

Later in the meeting, council directed staff to amend the district’s street naming policy to include other amenities such as trails, parks and facilities.

Read more: New sign honours the late Rob Flockhart at Sicamous and District Recreation Centre

Read more: Sicamous resident recognized for more than 50 years of volunteering

A related staff report included two names for consideration: Rob Flockhart and Lloyd Gavel.

“Mr. Gavel has been a resident and a community volunteer for over fifty years,” reads the report. “His contributions to Sicamous include firefighting, community functions, maintenance around Sicamous (snow clearing and weed removal), driving residents to Salmon Arm, local donations and other philanthropic initiatives.”

Gavel was recently recognized by the district and Mayor Terry Rysz as a Community Champion.

Community Services Manager Jason Freund explained the proposed updated naming policy would include a public consultation process, “to make sure that we are getting comments from the public… and possibly bringing out any information that may be known to the public that we aren’t aware of.”

It was noted a Rob Flockhart Way street sign exists above the newer breezeway leading to the rec centre’s main entrance. The former Sicamous and District Recreation Centre Society put it up in June 2021 on the Columbia Shuswap Regional District property in Rob’s honour.

Town manager Evan Parliament said ideally, the Flockhart family would love to see something in Two Mile named after Rob.

With council supportive of the policy amendment, staff explained the district could begin conducting public consultation now regarding what could be named after Lloyd Gavel and Rob Flockhart.


lachlan@saobserver.net
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