Humbled by the honor, Major said there are many more people who have been involved since the organization started with the outdoor rink in the upper parking lot at
Austin Park during a time when the village Department of Public Works was located there.
For some, Major was most deserving of the award this year because of the time he's given to the sport, but also to the community - Major has been a volunteer firefighter for more than 50 years, was team manager for countless youth hockey teams and has worked as a public servant in the roles of town supervisor and town justice.
"He's just been one of the backbones for youth hockey for years and year and years," Marquardt said. "He's a person who's been a role model for people in Skaneateles. It was nice to give him that honor."
For 25 consecutive years, Major manned the penalty box at Skaneateles' home games where he kept penalized players under control and let them out when their time was up.
"It gets confusing when more than one [player] is in there with different times," Major said.
But with the home ice advantage, he always handled the Skaneateles box and was able to talk the players down.
"I could keep them from saying anything to refs that might get them more time," he said.
Not only has Major been instrumental in turning Skaneateles into a hockey town, he also instilled a love of the game in his children. All five of his sons played from tykes on up through high school and continue to have great adoration for the sport.
Some have followed in their father's footsteps by taking active roles in local hockey programs, like son Mitch Major, who is currently the varsity boys ice hockey coach.
Marquardt said Major is a the kind of man who shows up and cheers on the home team and is an incredibly positive and dedicated member of the Skaneateles community who is deserving of the title "Local Hockey Hero."
"The community owes him a great deal," Marquardt said.
Miranda Pennock is a former editor of the Skaneateles Press, reach her at email@example.com.