Homecoming for Olympian Hill planned

Kevin Hill and his family want to say thank you to Vernon and the North Okanagan for supporting Hill’s Olympic dream.

The Canadian men’s snowboard cross athlete, who finished eighth in the event at Sochi (though he was in second place in his semifinal and racing toward a berth in the final race when he was knocked down from behind by a Spanish racer) will be the guest of honour at a public gathering Wednesday, from 3 to 6 p.m., in the Grand Room at Kal Tire Place.

The event is open to everyone.

“Come on out and meet and welcome Kevin home from Sochi, and see and hear how your support helped make his experience truly Olympic-sized,” said Hill’s sister, Shanda.

The event Wednesday is a drop-in style, and support has been thrown in by Rancho Vignola, Tim Hortons, Save-On-More and the Real Canadian Superstore.

The Vernon School District will be sending out a notice for kids and their parents to attend.

There will be a draw for each one of Hill’s 10 limited edition World Cup racing jerseys for the kids.

The Hills extended an invitation to the event to fellow Vernon Olympian Justin Dorey, who placed 12th in the first-ever men’s ski halfpipe.

Dorey led the event after the first two runs, and, according to commentators and observers, was on his way to a gold-medal-winning run when he crashed.

Dorey, however, has said to the Hills he is unlikely to make the event as he will be spending time resting at his home in Whistler.

“I just wanna say thanks for all the support over the years from you and your family, you guys are awesome and I really appreciate it,” wrote Dorey to the Hills in an e-mail.

“I told him we will recognize him from afar as both he and Kevin have represented Canada and Vernon so well,” said Shanda.

“For a sport that beats the snot out of their bodies, I’m definitely proud of them both for sticking it out.”

Dorey’s father, Peter, owner of Olympia Cycle and Ski in Vernon, was in the crowd at Sochi cheering on his son.


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