Mr. Hockey gets his just desserts

Dennis Beraducci has won a major award from the RBC Local Hockey Leaders Program. Beraducci is Revelstoke's life-long promoter of all things hockey, especially minor hockey, our local hockey historian, hockey announcer, world-class volunteer, heavy-duty fund-raiser and... he burns a mean smokie, too. David F. Rooney photo

By Steve Smith

Many Revelstokians know Denis Beraducci. You may like him… you may not. He is opinionated, and speaks from the heart, but something no one can refute about Mr. Hockey is that he wears his heart on his jersey when it comes to minor hockey.

Who else donates that much time to our kids in the Forum?  Whether it’s helping perpetually at each minor hockey tournament or having the insane ability to remember the name of each and every kid who’s skated over the Revelstoke Minor Hockey Association’s ice since time began – it is borderline obsessive how much he knows about and brags about each Revelstoke kid and where they are now in relation to their successes. You read about them on the proudly displayed History of Hockey walls in the Forum demonstrating his commitment to preserving the legacy of our hockey kids. Yes, you can’t argue with 35 years of volunteerism for Minor Hockey.

So, he got his ‘just desserts’ on the evening of April 12 at the RMHA’s annual banquet and awards ceremony (where he was consequently volunteering as MC). Unbeknownst to Dennis, a grateful parent and consummate volunteer herself, Renee Howe; silently had nominated him at the end of last year for a Volunteerism award sponsored by BC Hockey, TEAM First (Together Everyone Achieves More) and the Vancouver Canucks (Center for BC Hockey).

Then, a representative from BC Hockey was on the agenda for the banquet, but many present weren’t certain or maybe able to tell Dennis what he was there for that night. He presented Dennis with the 2009-10 Minor Hockey Week Award, read a bio prepared by Renee, and was awarded the honor along with another six recipients from across the province. Quite an honor and well deserved. The beauty of it was that Dennis was completely unaware.

On the certificate it states, ‘BC Hockey recognizes and appreciates the outstanding contributions made to the administration of minor hockey and the development of young players skills and sportsmanship.’ – Issued January 2010

Renee Howe and the RMHA had received notification that if they chose to, they could nominate someone locally for all their contributions to minor hockey, “Dennis puts in so much time helping out minor hockey. We had tried with the Volunteer program that Royal Bank of Canada does, but no luck. He deserved this for all he does. I remember him helping coach my brother when he was young.”

Yes, Dennis, you deserve it. Now and for 35 years of diligence and commitment. Not many of us can state that with pride. Great work my friend.

Steve Smith is the morning host on Revelstoke’s EZ Rock station and a contributor to The Revelstoke Current