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It was while a teenager in Red Lake during the 1940s that this future curling legend first learned the fine art of ice making while assisting his uncle at the Madsen Curling Club. Moving to Red Rock in the late 1950s, he became the maintenance supervisor at their recreation centre, a position he held for over 30 years. Developing his skills as an ice-technician by maintaining that facilities ice, along with the Nipigon Curladrome, he went on to become one of the sports most highly respected and innovative ice-makers.

In addition to providing consultation to curling rinks throughout northern Ontario, he also looked after ice preparations and maintenance for numerous events and bonspiels including mixed, men's and women's provincial play-downs.

First taking his knowledge to the national level as a volunteer with ice preparations at the 1985 Brier, he was asked to return the following year, going on to volunteer at five more Briers between 1986-90. In 1991, he was hired by the Canadian Curling Association to serve as an assistant ice-maker working in that capacity until 1995, and assisting at the 1996 World Curling Championships in Hamilton.

When Thunder Bay hosted the Scott Tournament of Hearts in 1996 he was tapped to take on the duties of Head Ice Technician, going on to lead ice-making crews for the women's national championship from 1996-2000, and assisting at three more events into the 2000s. His ability to transform hockey rinks into top-notch curling surfaces led to Thunder Bay's successful hosting of such events as the 1991 Canadian Mixed, JVC/TSN Women's Skins and the 1998 World Junior Curling Championship.

'Schneider', as he came to be known, also developed innovative ice-making techniques, including the use of wool to run the lines on a curling sheet which he introduced at the 2004 Scotties and is now standard practice at curling rinks around the world.

The recipient of multiple curling club Life Memberships and awards, in 2001 he was named the first recipient of the Joan Mead Award for his significant contribution to the growth of women's curling in Canada and in 2019 was honoured by the Northern Ontario Curling Association. At 83 years young he continues to remain dedicated to his craft by assisting with the installation of ice throughout the region and passing along his knowledge to the next generation of ice-makers.

Inducted into the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame, September 28, 2019

Lloyd Stansell

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