The Stanley Cup Makes Its Only Quebec Visit, to Sept-Îles en français
from CoteWeb, July 25, 1999 Issue
Guy Carbonneau receives a gift from Louisette Doiron-Catto of the town of Sept-îles. (The banner says "Guy Carbonneau: A Man of Honor")
The residents of Sept-Îles are indeed most privileged, since this year out of all Quebec they alone got to host the Stanley Cup, given to the champion of the National Hockey League. It must be said that Sept-Îles is exceptionally well represented within this prestigious league, which includes the best hockey players on the planet. Out of about sixty Quebec natives in the NHL, three are from Sept-Îles.
It was former Canadiens captain and Dallas Stars veteran player, Guy Carbonneau, who was responsible for the visit of the Cup to Sept-Îles. The NHL championship trophy arrived at the airport around 9:30 a.m. Saturday, July 24. A small ceremony was held there in the presence of Mr. Carbonneaus entire family, and took the form of a tribute to the Sept-Îles native. Approximately 150 people attended the airport gathering. The trophy was then moved to the local golf club, where people from around the area could have their photos taken with Guy Carbonneau in front of the Stanley Cup.
Normand Côté, spokesman for the Association of Minor Hockey of Sept-Îles, introduced Guy Carbonneau as a man of honor. "He had promised to bring the Cup to Sept-Îles. This is its first visit here. He kept his promise," said Mr. Côté.
In a short speech, the pro hockey player explained that for the past four years the NHL has allowed the Cup to travel with the players of the victorious team. He had been to visit his father, who unfortunately passed away several weeks ago, and to whom he had promised to bring the Cup. "My roots are really here, even though I left Sept-Îles when I was 15 years old. I like to come back to Sept-Îles. My family is here. I am happy to be able to share my success with my family and with the people here who have closely followed my career," declared Guy Carbonneau.
He was also in the area for a golf tournament and the opening of the Carbonneau/Duchesne Hockey School. He said he hoped that the young people of the area would get a taste of hockey and that the school would help develop some other athlete from the Côte-Nord so he might make his way to the NHL. Guy Carbonneau has been on three Stanley Cup champion teams during his long and glorious career. He indicated that negotiations with the Dallas Stars were very far along towards a contract for another year with the team.
The other professional hockey players from Sept-Îles, Karl Dykhuis and Steve Duchesne, will also make stopovers at their birthplace this week. A ceremony honoring Steve Duchesne, who has also had a brilliant career in the NHL, is scheduled for Wednesday, when a park on Maltais Street will be named for him.
Desnoyers realizes a dream
by Daniel Fortin for Nord Est Plus, July 29, 1999
Marie Desnoyers, age 79, resident of Foyer daccueil lIntermède de Sept-Îles, realized a great dream when she met Guy Carbonneau on his arrival at the Sept-Îles airport, and also got a chance to touch the Stanley Cup.
The septuagenarian has been a hockey fan for decades, but until last Saturday, she had never been able to speak to Guy Carbonneau, much less approach the Stanley Cup.
The youngsters are overwhelmed
Marie Desnoyers was not the only one who was moved by the visit of Guy Carbonneau, Steve Duchêsne and Karl Dykhuis.
Monday morning, at the Arena Conrad-Parent, where the hockey school trainees had the chance to be photographed with the professional hockey players, the youngsters were moved but happy.
"Its the real Carbonneau, its the real Steve," exclaimed the young people, very excited after having passed in front of the camera.
Several were unable even to smile for the souvenir photo, they were so overwhelmed to see their idols.
Sept-Îles finally recognizes
by Daniel Fortin for Nord Est Plus, July 29, 1999
Guy Carbonneau has played professional hockey for two decades, he has three Stanley Cups, he has always earned his money on the ice, but last Saturday at the airport was the first time that he could feel the people of Sept-Îles so close to him.
In spite of the sunny weather, there were 200 true fans waiting impatiently inside the air terminal since 8:30 a.m., wanting to see the hockey player more closely when he arrived in the family car around 9:15.
The Septiliens did things with much class, even with participation from outsiders.
"I never saw it so close," said a tourist who was passing by Sept-Îles, but made a side trip to the airport to see Carbo and the Stanley Cup.
Visit at the cemetery
Guy Carbonneau, who dedicated his third Stanley Cup to his father Charles-Aimé Carbonneau, recently deceased, kept his promise until the end.
He was accompanied by the members of his family on Saturday evening, when the group went to the Sept-Îles cemetery in order to show the Cup to the departed one, in a strictly familial ceremony where photography was prohibited.
Guy Carbonneaus day was not an occasion for fancy speeches.
After having thanked the population for the appreciation that it had shown him, the hockey player acknowledged that he would like to play his last season in Dallas, although team management had not placed him on the protected players list. His business agent is negotiating a return for next season.
Nervousness in the air
It is necessary to recognize the assistance of the Carboneau-Duchênes Hockey School for the organization and success of Guy Carbonneaus day.
"Its very stressful to me. Im anxious for Sunday morning when its all finished," declared Normand Côté, 24 hours before the arrival of the Stanley Cup.
"We wanted to have a good show, while neither exaggerating it nor failing to give it sufficient attention," he said. The committee can say mission accomplished.
That success continued Saturday afternoon at the Sept-Îles golf club, where for three hours fans could get their photographs taken with the Stanley Cup.
Some even had to turn back, access to the clubhouse was so difficult due to the crowds.
[thanks to Steve Geronazzo
for the articles from Nord Est Plus!]