By Kelly Anne Smith
NORTH BAY—First Nation communities were cheering hard at Memorial Gardens on February 2.
Dokis First Nation children from Kikendawt Kinoomaadii Gamig opened the game singing our national anthem in Ojibway. Kikendawt Kinoomaadii Gamig educates students in JK, SK, and Grades 1-4.
Taking part holding the Dokis First Nation Flag, Chief Gerry Duquette Jr. was wearing a Lajeunesse Sarnia Sting jersey, as were the Grandparents of #9, Beverly and Tinny Restoule.
Beverly exclaimed that Troy has been playing hockey since he was three.
“We are very proud of him,” stated Restoule.
Recently Lajeunesse hit a big milestone. On Jan.30, Troy scored two goals within 16 seconds and got an assist against the Saginaw Spirit. Winning 6-5, the second goal for the high ranking centre had him reach 100 points in his OHL career.
The 19-year-old had a chance to catch up with his friends and family. Lajeunesse lived in North Bay after growing up on Dokis First Nation. He is currently living in Waterloo.
Troy’s Aunt, Lisa Restoule, follows his hockey career closely.
“Troy is very proud and happy to have had the support from his Anishinabek Nation and North Bay friends and even more proud to have all the support from his community of Dokis First Nation,” noted Restoule.
Another Anishinabek hockey player was in the spotlight as well at Memorial Gardens that night. Right-handed defenseman Bo Peltier was called up from the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey Association Powassan Voodoos in the meet with Sarnia. He continued to play at least three games in the OHL. Voodoos GM Chris Dawson calls the defenseman a hard worker who is a leader on the team—quietly leading through his actions.
Dawson added that Peltier has good hockey roots with his dad, Gerard, having played in Cornwall for the Royals when they were an OHL team.
The Peltier’s are from Wikwemikong First Nation. Gerard made an outdoor rink for Bo and his brothers Jesse, Keiran, and Evan who all played rep hockey in North Bay.
“They spent a lot of winter mornings and evenings on the back yard outdoor rink we had at home in Wiki,” recalled Peltier.
Mother of the Peltier boys, Maxine, is very proud of all of her athletic boys.
Bo, who wore number 18 for the Battalion squad, is a multi-sport athlete playing football, baseball, and lacrosse. Last August, Bo helped Iroquois West win the World Jr. Indoor Lacrosse Championship, beating out Team Canada east at Six Nations, Haudenosaunee.