The four are Jack Caffery who played in the NHL for the Leafs and Bruins, Joe Krol who won five Grey Cups with the Toronto Argonauts, Christine Pellerin of the Toronto Leaside Girls Hockey Association and Dr. Sidney Soanes, a founding member of the Leaside Skating Club.
“There seems to be no end of athletic talent in Leaside past and present,” said Professor Michael Bliss, community advisor on the selection committee, “and in future the job of our selection committee is only going to get harder.”
Tickets for the induction ceremony and reception will be available through any of Leaside’s sports clubs and associations, and at the arena for $25 each.
Leaside’s Athlete of the Year, who will also be honoured at the event on Nov. 21, will be announced in October.
Jack Caffery grew up in Leaside and attended St Michael’s College School, where he played hockey for the Junior B Buzzers and the Junior A Majors. He was also an effective left-handed baseball pitcher and played semi-pro for St. Thomas in the Ontario Intercounty League. At age 20 he signed professional contracts with the Toronto Maple Leafs (hockey) and the Milwaukee Braves (baseball). Unwilling to give up baseball, he was traded by the Leafs to the Boston Bruins in 1956 and played a full season there. His baseball career (1955-64) was played mainly at the AA and AAA level and his hockey career (1954-61) in the AHL. Caffery was the first “home-grown” Leasider to play in the NHL, and is credited with being the originator of the “backward” grip for face-offs.
Joe Krol played football at high school in Windsor, Ontario and for the University of Western Ontario (1938-42). After two seasons of professional ball in Hamilton and a brief stint with the Detroit Lions, he took up a career with the Toronto Argonauts and led them to five Grey Cups as a quarterback, running back, defensive back, place kicker and punter. He was most noted for his versatility, and was twice named Canada’s Male Athlete of the Year. His other honours include induction into the Canadian Football League Hall of Fame and Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame. He retired in 1953. Joe Krol lived in Leaside for most of his playing career and following retirement from football.
Dr. Sidney Soanes received a doctorate in physics from the University of Toronto in 1946 and was a founding member of the Leaside skating club in 1952. For over 50 years he served the sport of figure skating as an author, committee member, judge and referee. As an International Skating Union judge Soanes oversaw thousands of competitions and tests. One of the most highly-respected authorities on ice dance judging, he wrote Ice Dancing – A Manual for Judges and Skaters, which continues to serve as the ice dance judges’ bible. In 1967 he was awarded a Centennial Medal for his contribution and in 1992 he was inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of fame for his contributions to the sport of figure skating.
Christine Pellerin is a major contributor to female ice hockey in Leaside and Ontario, and to ball hockey in Canada. She has served as a coach, head trainer and board member of the Toronto Leaside Girls Hockey Association, as supervisor and instructor for the Ontario Women’s Hockey Association, and as a vice-president of the Ontario Ball Hockey Federation.
Pellerin was on three national championship-
winning ball hockey teams as an athlete, three more as coach, and on three world championship-winning teams as head coach of Women’s Team Canada. She is also one of Ontario’s top women’s ice hockey referees. She was inducted into the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association’s Hall of Fame in 2013 and is a mentor to female athletes of all ages.