Log Cabin Chronicles

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Officer Bolduc et al return from the World Games in Sweden with a bronze medal & good memories

KAREN ERYOU

[EDITOR'S NOTE: You may remember Noël Bolduc Jr., the Quebec police officer who wanted to play hockey in the World Police & Fire Games held earlier this year in Sweden. He was out flogging hats and tee-shirts to raise the money to get there, and get there he did. Bolduc and his team of fellow over-35 Quebec officers brought home a bronze medal. Not bad for a kid who dreamed of being both a cop and hockey star.]

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN | He went to the World Police & Fire Games for the gold, played some tough hockey, had a great time, and settled for bringing back a bronze medal.

"Stockholm 99" was a great experience for Quebec police officer Noël Bolduc Jr. and the Sûreté du Québec's hockey team of the 35-and-over group. Noël is an SQ officer serving the Coaticook MRC in the Eastern Townships of Quebec, and was one of only two local officers chosen to represent the Townships SQ.

Among 8000 competitors, the SQ's hockey team played two games their first day in Sweden, and in five days played a total of six games.

The game everyone talked about was with the Alberta team, and quite a game that proved to be. It got very physical so the referees let them play Canadian rules.

"The referees came to us and said clean checks, and there won't be any penalties," Bolduc said. "So that's the way we played. When we saw the players coming down the ice, we cut them off using our bodies -- it was a physical game, and we came out on top winning 3-2." said Bolduc.

He trained hard for eight months, biking, jogging, a gym program, and raised travel money by selling tee-shirts and ball caps. After his story appeared in the Log Cabin Chronicles he received many words of encouragement as well as requests for his tees and caps. Bolduc heard from both strangers and long-lost friends, and he was quite amazed by the connective power of the Internet.

"When I left, my aim was for nothing but the gold," he said. But the team had virtually no on-ice experience together, as members of the squad were from all over the province.

Sweden beat out the SQ's team for the gold, and the Montreal team of the SPCUM for the silver.

"Everyone on the team was very emotional when we knew we had won a metal," Bolduc said.

Bolduc said he enjoyed his experience, loved the scenery, but found prices a bit stiff. A Big Mac Trio -- burger, fries, and a drink -- cost $14 Canadian. A cold and very deserving beer after an exhausting game cost $9.

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Bolduc is looking forward to 2001, when the games will be held in Indianapolis, Indiana. He plans to be there, looking for gold.


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© 1999 Karen Eryou/Log Cabin Chronicles/8.99