Olympic Send-off Party

Thursday, June 26, 2008 - By: Brian Carr

On Wednesday afternoon, the staff and students took time off from their busy schedules to honour four Olympians heading off to Beijing: Malcolm Howard, Dave Calder, Scott Frandsen, and Connor Grimes. The entire student body flowed out onto the lawns in front of the main plaza to the stage set up for our guests: Mr. Howard Martin (former Head of Field Hockey), Mr. Tony Carr (former Head of Rowing), Mrs. Andrea Pennells (Head of School), Mr. Kyle Hamilton (Captain and stroke of the Canadian men's eight), and special guest, Mr. Malcolm Howard (Class of 2001 and five-seat in the Canadian men's eight).
After a welcome from Mrs. Pennells, Mr. Martin spoke about the Grimes family and the role they played in field hockey in Canada. Both of Connor's sisters Aoibhinn and Anna are former national team players and his brother Richard narrowly missed the national team after a career-ending injury in a game against Peru. He then called the Grimes family on stage where a large Canadian flag with all the signatures from the student body was presented to them in Connor's honour. Presenting the flag were Stuart Wylie, Connie Wylie, Alison Ukrainec, and Mary Nielsen. Tony Carr then spoke to the three Olympic rowers and gave a brief overview of their high school, university and national team careers. In his speech he spoke to the student body explaining the positive role of the Brentwood family after graduation. Lastly Malcolm gave a brief speech about what it takes to be an Olympian and how Brentwood prepared him for that journey. Three members of the rowing club then presented Malcolm and his teammate, Kyle Hamilton, with a 20-foot banner containing hundreds of signatures to take to Beijing and display at the rowing venue. Joining Kyle and Malcolm on stage were Dave Calder's wife Rachel and four-year-old daughter Mira, John Queen (Whittall Housemaster, teacher, and coach of Blair Horn -- 1984 Olympic gold medalist in the men's eight), Tony Carr (former head coach), Brian Carr (head coach) and 2008 grads Dan Thompson, Dan Munsell, and Brooke Huestis. The Rowing Club then hosted a barbecue for the guests and the entire school on the plaza with Mount Baker in full view as the backdrop for the festivities. We, the Brentwood community, are very proud of our Olympians. Our spirit will be there with them as they don their Canadian jerseys and represent our country and our school at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

Brian Carr

The Victoria Times-Colonist article.

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