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John Reid Scholarship opens for AAA bantam hockey alumni

The deadline for applications is Jan. 6.
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Karen Sutherland, treasurer of the John Reid Memorial Society, presents Josh Dechaine with the 2020 John Reid Memorial scholarship. Dechaine was a member of the 2013 St. Albert Sabres and used the scholarship money in 2020 to help him pursue a bachelor of commerce degree at the University of Alberta. SUPPLIED/Photo

Former AAA St. Albert hockey players can pick up some extra cash by applying for the John Reid Memorial Scholarship, which is now accepting applicants. 

Prospective applicants must have at least three years of minor hockey experience in St. Albert and at least some experience playing at the bantam AAA level in the community. Applications are being accepted until Jan. 6. 

The winner will be selected by a committee of about five people from the John Reid Memorial Society and will receive $1,000 to put toward their education. 

The scholarship, which has been around for 13 years now, coincides with the John Reid Memorial Tournament. About 16 bantam AAA hockey teams from across Canada and the U.S. will arrive for the 2022 iteration of the tourney, which takes place over a three-day period from Jan. 13 to 16. 

The host team for the tournament, as always, will be the St. Albert Gregg Distributors Sabres. 

Trudy Kueber, long-time tournament chair, said the scholarship was first developed in 2009 after Sabres parents decided to put the profits from that year’s tournament into an award. 

“We started the scholarship in 2009,” said Kueber. “We had a little bit of extra money and wanted to put it back into something so we started the scholarship in memory of John Reid and it’s still going.” 

John Reid was a prominent member of St. Albert’s minor hockey association. Kueber said Reid was the perfect person to memorialize with the scholarship as it carries on his giving spirit. 

“He passed away in 2003 of cancer and we just felt like we wanted to remember him and his giving nature,” said Kueber. “[The parents and I] were really good friends with him so it was a perfect fit.” 

The award is meant to help former Sabres reach their academic goals. One of the criteria includes good academic performance in Grade 12. All applicants must write a 250-word essay on what it meant to play AAA hockey in St. Albert. 

Josh Dechaine played in the 2013 tournament but was awarded the scholarship in 2020 while studying at the University of Alberta. He said winning the award helped him along in his studies. 

“It definitely was a huge help,” said Dechaine. “Post-secondary is increasingly getting more and more expensive so I used [the scholarship money] to take away the financial stress and take a little bit of the burden off.” 

He urged every eligible applicant to throw their hats in the ring for this year’s award. 

“It’s nice to be able to have that opportunity,” said Dechaine. “Anyone who is eligible for it should apply.” 

Interested parties can download the application form and read instructions on how to submit the application on the tournament’s website at Again, the deadline for applications is Jan. 6.