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ICE RINK DEDICATION CEREMONY TO HONOR THE 5 VETERANS WHO FOUNDED SOMERVILLE YOUTH HOCKEY

Special emcee and guests at event on Saturday, Oct. 26; Legendary BU Ice Hockey Coach Jack Parker to speak at ceremony

SOMERVILLE
– Five Somerville veterans who founded Somerville Youth Hockey and exemplify
service to country and community will be honored when the new ice rink at 570
Somerville Ave., next to the Veterans Memorial Rink, is officially dedicated as
the Founders Rink at a special event on Saturday, Oct. 26, at 2 p.m.

The
rink’s new sign will be unveiled at the event and the founders’ families will
be presented with copies of the plaque that honors the five men who, after
serving our nation in the Armed Forces, came home and created an integral piece
of Somerville’s community: George Hughes (Army), John Doncaster (Army), Raymond
Deeran (Navy), James Papaluca (Marine) and Joseph Guidi (Navy). A special guest
who will be well-known to hockey fans will serve as the emcee for the event,
and legendary Boston University ice hockey coach—and Somerville native—Jack Parker
will also speak during the ceremony.

“These
five men are role models for every person in Somerville,” Mayor Joseph A.
Curtatone said. “Everything we do in Somerville is based on the core value of
building community and making our city an exceptional place to live, work, play
and raise a family. Somerville Youth Hockey and its mission is directly tied
into these values, and for that we must thank these five men who epitomize
Somerville’s core values and service, to both their country and their
community. We are humbled that we can call George Hughes, John Doncaster, Ray
Deeran, Jim Papaluca and Joe Guidi as ours, as Somerville’s, and I look forward
to this Saturday’s dedication that will permanently recognize their
immeasurable contribution to our community.”

“From
their time serving in the Armed Forces to their time running Somerville Youth Hockey,
these five men have created a lasting legacy of teamwork and made an enduring
positive impact on the city of Somerville,” said Ward 2 Alderman Maryann
Heuston. “Their hard work and commitment is the catalyst that led to a boom in
kids becoming interested in hockey and, ultimately, the construction of this
new rink. It’s only right that Founders Rink is dedicated in their names.”

In
October 1964, Deeran and Hughes placed an advertisement in the Record American
inviting anyone interested in forming a youth hockey program in Somerville to
attend a meeting at the Veterans of Foreign Wars James A. Logan Post. Five men
showed up at the meeting and by the end of the night, Somerville Youth Hockey
had a board in place: Deeran as president, Guidi as vice president, Doncaster
as secretary, Hughes as treasurer and Papaluca as players’ agent.

That
fall, 30 kids signed up, forming four teams. One year later, enough kids had
signed up that the program had already grown to four Peewee teams (under 13
years old) and four Bantam teams (under 15 years old), along with all-stars
from each age group forming the association’s first traveling teams.

The
soon-to-be-named Founders Rink opened in September 2012 next to the Veterans
Memorial Rink. The City of Somerville assumed maintenance and daily operations
of Veterans Memorial Rink from the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and
Recreation in 2010.


END –

 

Contact: Denise Taylor 617-625-6600, ext. 2103,
dtaylor@somervillema.gov

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