Great recovery after cup’s interception
As Canadian sport’s oldest trophy makes the rounds in B.C. this week, Grey Cup fans have a well-known South Surrey runner to thank for ensuring the historic prize actually made it to scheduled appearances in their communities.
Ferg Hawke, who works at Vancouver Airport, had arranged to touch base with Surrey-White Rock MLA and friend Gordon Hogg before Hogg’s connecting flight to Kelowna Tuesday afternoon.
Hogg had seen the Grey Cup on and off the plane at Comox, and had watched as it was marked ‘fragile’ at YVR and sent on its way for loading for the next leg to Kelowna.
With a few moments to spare, Hogg encouraged Hawke to go down to where the cup was waiting with the other luggage, pull it out and have his photo taken with it. Hawke jumped at the opportunity, but returned moments later with news Hogg wasn’t expecting.
“The cup didn’t arrive,” he was told.
“I said, ‘It’s gotta be there – we’re leaving in five minutes.’ (Hawke) made some phone calls; apparently, it had slipped off the ramp somewhere.”
Hogg – who called Peace Arch News from Penticton to share tales from the tour – said he thanked Hawke profusely for saving the day.
“It wouldn’t have arrived if Ferg hadn’t gone down and checked.”
Won by the B.C. Lions Nov. 27, the Grey Cup – with a number of Lions players – has, since Sunday, made appearances in communities from Coquitlam to Victoria, and was scheduled for events in Kamloops last night and this morning, before heading to 100 Mile House, Williams Lake, Prince George and Burnaby.
Friday evening, it will be at the South Surrey Boston Pizza from 6-8 p.m. for a KidSport fundraiser, then will head to Cloverdale Saturday morning before gracing a private banquet luncheon with the Surrey Titans – who claimed their first midget football title in December – at Ocean Park Community Hall.
Following the latter, members of the public are encouraged to come out to the 1577 128 St. hall from 1:30-2:30 p.m. to see the cup, meet the Lions and get photos and autographs.
Hogg, who was on the Grey Cup planning committee, said the tour is about more than celebrating the Lions’ victory over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. It’s about local pride, recognizing KidSport – an organization that helps remove financial barriers that may prevent some children from playing organized sports, for which the tour has so far raised $1,500 – and celebrating sports heroes who may never make headlines, but well-deserve the title.
“It’s not all about the people who are in the front pages,” Hogg said. “When they see the cup, we’re trying to give that message.”