Written by Joey Adams
In honour of Tyson Giuriato’s memory, his family is proud to announce the first ever recipients of the Tyson Giuriato Hockey Camp Scholarship: Ethan Kersten and Sophia Swain.
Tyson joined the CSSHL in 2013 and served as the Director of Media and Communications until he sadly passed away in August 2020. To honour Tyson’s passion for and contributions to the game of hockey, his family and the CSSHL community came together to offer families the ability to have their child (aged 7-14) attend a summer hockey camp of their choice. The Tyson Giuriato Hockey Camp Scholarship makes this possible by paying for one hockey camp registration for the successful applicants.
Nine-year-old Ethan Kersten started playing novice minor with Juan de Fuca last year and instantly fell in love with the game. He used to be shy and playing hockey has helped to build his confidence and make new friends. Prior to COVID, Ethan enjoyed playing road hockey every lunch hour with schoolmates. This year, along with playing for Juan de Fuca, he has started taking power skating lessons twice a week.
Ethan has a growing collection of hockey cards and jerseys, recently adding Vancouver Canucks, Team Canada, and Connor McDavid jerseys. He watches games with his dad, grandma, and great-grandpa, and talks about the game non-stop. His other interests include lacrosse, drawing, origami, and mountain biking with his dad.
Ethan’s scholarship will go towards the Mena Westhaver U11-U13 preseason training camp, taking place at the end of August in Victoria, BC. He is very excited to attend. “I think he was stunned; he couldn’t believe that he was named the recipient,” said Ethan’s mom, Erin.
Thirteen-year-old Sophia Swain, from Lantzville, BC, has only been playing hockey for one year, but has always been involved in the game, having watched her eleven-year-old brother play. Making the decision to start playing herself, Sophia signed up for skating lessons, which were unfortunately interrupted by COVID. However, she did get the opportunity to attend the girls Nanaimo Minor Hockey Association camp at the end of last summer.
This year, Sophia will play on a U15 girls team. She loves how hockey is a combination of sport and strategy, requiring you to think just as much as you have to move. Outside of hockey, Sophia, who was a competitive dancer for eight years, has a 92% average in school and wants to be a surgeon or teacher when she grows up. She volunteers in her community by regularly singing the national anthem at Nanaimo Clippers games (BCHL) and is signed up to be a youth leader at summer camps.
Sophia’s scholarship will go towards attending the Nanaimo Minor Hockey Association camp again this summer. “I was really surprised and excited too, because I really wanted it so I could have another opportunity to go to another camp this summer and further develop my hockey skills,” said Sophia.
Tyson was many wonderful things: a son, brother, uncle, common-law partner, friend, dog-dad, hockey player, and journalist. He had an infectious laugh, a hilariously dry sense of humour, and an enormous energy that could fill an arena. Most importantly, Tyson was a person who was loved and admired beyond measure.
Tyson loved sports, but his true passion was for the game of hockey. Growing up, he spent many weeks every summer attending hockey camps – making friends and improving his skills. Getting to work within the game of hockey was a dream for Tyson, and he was proud of his accomplishments at the CSSHL. His family felt that a scholarship in his name would be an appropriate way to keep his hockey legacy alive.
Tyson’s family, friends, and the CSSHL committee enjoyed reading about the lives of today’s young hockey players. There were many quality applications, and it was difficult picking only two kids.
Ethan reminded family and friends of Tyson at that age – especially his hockey card collection, watching games with family, and playing road hockey with friends. Ethan, we all hope you have fun at the camp!
Tyson always felt there were a lot of underutilized opportunities for girls in hockey, because of that, his family felt it was important to send a girl to a hockey camp. Sophia impressed by taking it upon herself to apply for the scholarship and starting to play the game after years of watching her brother. Her hard work, team attitude, and volunteerism are superb qualities. Also, when Tyson was growing up, his family rarely missed a Clippers game! Keep up the great work, Sophia!
The Giuriato family would like to thank all of those who applied or donated in Tyson’s memory, and the CSSHL for making this scholarship possible.