Charlie Major named Hockey Hero in Skaneateles

Each year, the Skaneateles Youth Hockey Association dubs a community member its "Local Hockey Hero."

Usually, the guy taking photos is town Justice Charlie Major, but this year as he readied himself to photograph the honoree, his camera was taken from him and Major was told he was the 2011 Local Hockey Hero award recipient.

Generally the one doing the tricking, Major said this time he was tricked and totally unaware he would be receiving the award.

"We told him he was just going to be taking photos," said SYHA Board President Bill Marquardt. "He showed up to take the photos and it was great to pull the wool over him a bit."

"I knew nothing about this," Major said.

Major joins an elite group of people who have been named local hockey heroes, including Bill Allyn and Chuck Gridley, who have spent numerous years coaching local children on the ice and have been honored in recent years with the award.

"It's a very special group of people who've received the award," Marquardt said. "It's nice to be able to add Charlie to this list."

The award is given annually during Hockey Weekend Across America, which SYHA is encouraged to celebrate and participate in by the national youth hockey association USA Hockey. Town Councilor Steve McGlynn presented the award this year to Major after the first period of the Feb. 18 high school hockey game. He was chosen for his dedication to local hockey and the community.

"He's been involved with the association since literally the early 70s and worked as a volunteer and board member," Marquardt said. "He's been involved right from the start and has been an advocate for years."

Major was one of the founding members of the Skaneateles Youth Hockey Association and served as a board member for many years. Every year he took part is constructing an outdoor rink at Austin Park before the old rink was built, which he helped pave the way for during his tenure as Skaneateles town supervisor, Marquardt said.

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