Tributes are pouring in for Ray Stonehouse, Pacific Junior Hockey League (PJHL) president and former long-time owner of the Ridge Meadows Flames, who passed away at the age of 76.
On Saturday, July 17, the league issued a statement.
”The PJHL would like to extend its thoughts and prayers to Sue Stonehouse and the Stonehouse family during this difficult time,” the announcement said.
”Ray was not only a Keystone Cup champion, Cyclone Taylor Cup Champion, and three-time Pacific Junior Hockey League champion, but he was a champion for all Junior B hockey, teams, players, coaches, and officials in B,C.”
Friends and fans recalled a tough but fair man, who was a strong ambassador for the league.
Among them, Sean Murray, who knew Stonehouse from when he played and coached.
“My deepest condolences to his wife, Sue,” Murray said.
“Always loved talking hockey with Ray. God bless you my friend and R.I.P.”
Tim Knight was grateful for “all the memories and inspiration he shared” and described Stonehouse as a “passionate, hard working, dedicated hockey builder.”
“Some of my clearest hockey memories were in Old Cam Neely arena with the Flames when Stoney would come into the room and fire us up. He’s had a major impact on so many and will be missed,” Knight said.
Gord Spink recalled playing for Stonehouse in the early 90’s, calling him a “strong ambassador” for the PJHL.
“Thank you for all your hard work over the years, it never went unnoticed,” Spink commented.
Megan Steenhuisen said what he did for the junior hockey community “is a true example of dedication.”
Quinn Donovan said Stonehouse “was a good man, tough but fair, with a lot of great insight into the game he served with honor, and he will be missed.”
Chris Lakusta said he will miss seeing Stonehouse at the rink in Aldergrove.
“It won’t be the same without you but your spirit will live forever in the ones you came contact with including mine,” Lakusta wrote. “R.I.P. Mr. Stonehouse.”
In 2020, Stonehouse was nominated to be inducted into the BC Hockey Hall of Fame.
His hall of fame biography noted that he started with the league in 1980 when it was called the West Coast Junior Hockey League, and described him as “an integral part of the success of Junior B Hockey in British Columbia.”
Stonehouse owned the PJHL Ridge Meadows Flames for 25 years, before selling the team in 2005.
“I just felt it was time,” he told the Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows News in a 2016 profile. “Time to pass the torch.”
READ ALSO: Stonehouse president of junior B league
His teams won gold, silver, and bronze at the Keystone Cup Western Canadian Championships.
Since 1989, Ray and Susan owned and operated the Great Canadian Sportcard Company in Port Moody.
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