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Former CIS soccer player of the year Hearne dies


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Former CIS soccer player of the year Hearne dies in car accident


452 words

11 July 2006


The Canadian Press


© 2006 The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

LANGLEY, B.C. (CP) _ Kevin Hearne, a former Canadian university player of the year with the UBC Thunderbirds soccer team, has died in a car accident nearly Langley, B.C.

The native of Salmo, B.C., had left a soccer tournament he had played in with a group of friends in Fort Langley, B.C., when his car went off the Trans-Canada Highway on Saturday night _ the day before his 37th birthday.

A passenger in the vehicle was not seriously injured.

Hearne, who won Canadian Interuniversity Sport player of the year honours in 1993, was the head coach and a player for the Penticton Pinnacles of the Pacific Coast Soccer League.

``We're just in absolute shock right now,'' Pinnacles manager Manuel Borba told the Penticton Herald. ``Kevin was just so well-liked and respected in Penticton. He and his family came here a little over three years ago, and he was a breath of fresh air with his energy, passion and love for the game of soccer.''

Hearne had planned to drive back to Penticton early Sunday morning for a Pinnacles home game against the New Westminster Khalsa.

``This man was so incredibly respected and such an inspiration for soccer, not just in Penticton, but all over B.C.,'' teammate Neil MacDonald told the Herald. ``He was a mentor to so many young players and a great, great human being. This is just a huge, huge loss.''

As a player, Hearne played every position but goalkeeper and was well-known for his fearless and uncompromising play.

``I remember in the final of a tournament in Vancouver he split his head wide open on the crossbar, then he went to the bench and used tape to close the wound and wrapped some gauze around his head,'' MacDonald said. ``He came back on and his team won the game in overtime.''

Hearne won the Joe Johnson Memorial Trophy as the CIS player of the year in 1993. A year earlier, he had led the Thunderbirds to their eighth national championship. He was also a two-time CIS all-Canadian and twice earned Canada West first team all-star honours.

Hearne went on to play in the Vancouver Metro League Premier Division, earning numerous individual and team honours, mainly with Sapperton.

He also coached numerous youth and school teams, and operated his own soccer school in B.C.'s Lower Mainland and the Kootenays.

Hearne was also a teacher at Princess Margaret Secondary School and Skaha Lake Middle School in Penticton.

He is survived by his wife Poppy and children Brayden, 12, Shayla, 9, and Jaylen, 5.

(Penticton Herald)

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From turtleisland.org, a first nation wesbite -

The passing of a well known Aboriginal athlete and coach. . .

Former CIS athlete of the year and UBC soccer star Kevin Hearne, a

member of the Saanich Tribe, died in a car accident on July 8, one day before his 37th birthday.

In 1993, Hearne won the Joe Smith Memorial Trophy as Canada's best university soccer player. After graduating, he helped found the Sapperton Rovers soccer team and played for the Rovers this year to win the BC Mens Championship.

Hearne recently moved to Penticton to work as an aboriginal education teacher and helped many students from teh penticton Indian Band. He became Coach and Technical Director of the Penticton Pinnacles Soccer Club, and also coached the UBC Okanagan Campus soccer team.

He is survived by his wife and three young children.

A memorial service will be held in Salmo on Friday July 14 at 11am at the Salmo Community Centre.

Representatives of the Cheam Band will attend the service.

Members of the Penticton Band will perform at the next Penticton Pinnacles home game in honour of Kevin.

The Penticton Pinnacles have started a trust fund for Kevin's young family. Cheques can be sent to the Penticton Soccer Club, c/o Hearne Family Trust, 550 Eckhardt Avenue, Penticton BC, V2A 2B5.

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Fitting tribute By David Crompton

Monday, July 17, 2006, 12:01 AM

It was an emotional and heartwarming farewell tribute to Kevin Hearne, and the Penticton Tim Hortons Pinnacles put the icing on the cake by beating their arch-rivals for the second day in a row.

The Pinnacles defeated the Okanagan Challenge 5-1 in the Pacific Coast Soccer League finale in front of a sun-drenched gathering of around 1,000 people, many who came to honour and say goodbye to Hearne ñ the second-year player-coach who had quickly become the lifeblood of the Pinnacles.

Hearne lost his life in a car accident on July 8, one day before he was to turn 37.

"We all knew this was a game Kevin dearly wanted to win," said Hearneís close friend and Pinnacles interim coach Bryan Wevers, doing his best to choke back the tears.

"There was so much emotion here today and so much pressure to win this game for Kevin. The guys really made a statement with their heart, determination and perseverance and from a personal standpoint, Iím just so relieved and so ecstatic we could do this for the great people at the Penticton Soccer Club and all the people in Penticton Kevin has touched in his three years here."

The Pinnacles lineup was loaded with players from the Sapperton Rovers team from the Vancouver Metro Soccer League that Hearne had played and coached with since 1996. Sapperton players accounted for all five of the goals, with Emilio Bollieri scoring twice and Paul Favaro, Colin Phillips and Mike Favaro adding singles.

Marty Johnson scored early in the second half for the Challenge, who trailed 2-0 at the break.

Pinnacles manager Manuel Borba noted there were 23 players who wanted to be in the lineup, but league rules stipulate only 17 can.

"There were more Sapperton guys than Pinnacles Ö itís a nice problem to have with everyone wanting to play," said Borba.

"Some of our local guys graciously bowed out to let the Sapperton guys play."

Numerous other Sapperton officials were on hand, as were Hearneís parents and brother from Salmo, B.C. Also honoured at the game were Hearneís wife, Poppy, and their three children, Brayden, Shayla and Jaylen.

"It was just fantastic to have his parents and brother here as well," said Borba.

"They were quite overwhelmed by the heartfelt emotion ... they didn't realize the impact Kevin has had in such a short time here in Penticton. Kevin was always very humble, he never told them about all the things he was involved with."

The Pinnacles, the Penticton Soccer Club, the South Okanagan Youth Soccer Association and Sapperton presented Poppy and the three children with a trip to Disneyland.

"The family, I think especially the kids, really needed this," said Wevers.

"They have suffered an absolutely devastating blow, but they have to get some normalcy back in their lives and hopefully this is something that helps. It was just the icing on the cake to be able to do this for the family."

Wevers credited the soccer club officials, notably Borba, Ray Hintz, Alex Ferreira and president Dale Anderson, for doing such a superb job of arranging the tribute to Hearne.

"There was a lot of grieving after what happened, and there still is, but those guys managed to stay focused and put together a wonderful send-off for Kevin," said Wevers, who is player-coach at Sapperton.

Wevers also expressed gratitude to the Challenge organization for its cooperation and support.

"They let us do what we had to do to honour Kevin," stressed Wevers.

"For them to also wear the black armbands, thatís unheard of, so Iíd like to thank them for everything they did over these two games."

Borba added the Challenge showed tremendous sportsmanship in allowing the Pinnacles to field two completely different lineups with so many Sapperton players going in and out over the two games.

"They realized it was a tribute to someone who meant a lot to so many people, and that those Sapperton players out there had a huge emotional attachment to Kevin. (Manager) Eric Tasker and (captain) Morgan Marrs and their players showed a tremendous amount of class and sportsmanship."

The Pinnacles, who won 4-3 in Kelowna on Saturday, finished the season with a 4-7-3 record for 15 points. Penticton lost just one of its last seven games.

The Pinnacles also have a Trust Fund for the Hearne family.

© Monday, July 17, 2006Copyright PentictonHerald.ca

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