Winner tricked by coach
Don Mills' Chandler surprised to be named north's top athlete
Geoff Chandler, all-around athlete and exceptional student, was named the Town Crier’s North Region Athlete of the Year.
The 17-year-old grade 12 student from Don Mills CI had no idea he was going to win, as his sly coach found a way of tricking him into writing down what made him a great athlete.
“We’re going on a Bermuda tour next year and he told me ‘Yeah Geoff fill out all these questions about yourself and then give it to me so I can tell the people in Bermuda that this is the kind of player we have on our team.’ So I said ‘Oh, okay’ and I wrote all my stuff down, and I had no idea there was an award for it.”
Even at the awards ceremony, Chandler still had no idea he was going take home the hardware.
“When the guy was presenting the award winners and he started saying my name and I was thinking ‘Oh my God, I wrote all that’,” he said with a laugh.
Chandler got his first taste of sports as a young boy in elementary school.
He and one of his friends thought that cross-country seemed like a lot of fun. They joined the team and continued in sports ever since.
Now he plays hockey, rugby, and even referees the latter.
Not only does he play sports, but Chandler also likes to give back to the community, as shown by the 600 hours of volunteering he has put in.
Much of that time is spent coaching house-league hockey.
The hockey star was first introduced to the sport when he was about 7 years old and his parents have always been very supportive of him.
Outside of athletics, Chandler is involved with the Cadets and did a co-op program with the army.
“I’ve climbed the Rocky Mountains with them and I’m going parachuting this summer,” he said.
Chandler plans on going back to Don Mills CI for another year before graduating.
Although he was initially thinking of pursing landscape architecture, he is now veering toward becoming a phys-ed teacher and continuing his university career at either Brock or Queen’s.
“I think I can do more, I want to coach,” he says, “I want to coach kids who are progressing and who are at the point where they know what they want.
“They’re more serious and they know what they want so I can do my best and help them get there.”
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