Bell Warriors announce 2020 Jim Wagdin Scholarship winners

There is no question that this year has been challenging for the Bell Warriors Football Club. The Jim Wagdin Scholarships are an integral contribution to the continuing post-secondary education of ex-Warrior players. It took the generosity of Kevin Pidgeon, President and CEO of the Nautical Lands Group, to fund and ensure that the two $1,000 scholarships could be awarded in 2020.

(Kevin Pidgeon, a former Coach with the Bell Warriors Football Club and Gold Sponsor for the 2020 Jim Wagdin Scholarships for post-secondary education supporting ex-Bell Warrior players. Photo: Submitted)

We brought you the story back in June announcing Kevin’s financial support for the scholarships. At that time, Kevin expressed, “I wanted to be sure that this year’s bursaries could continue to be made without the Warriors having to impact the club’s operating funds”.

Thanks to Kevin’s support, the Bell Warriors have announced the winners of the two 2020 Jim Wagdin Scholarships – Ethan Ryan of Carleton Place and Daniel Briere of Ottawa. Both are former Warriors players. “The Bell Warriors Football Club is pleased and excited to announce that Warriors alumni parent and alumni coach Kevin Pidgeon has stepped up to fund this year’s two Bell Warriors Jim Wagdin Post-Secondary Scholarships,” stated Paul Stewart, Bell Warriors Football President.

Ethan Ryan will be at Carleton University this year studying music and is hopeful to play football with the Carleton Ravens when university sports return. He has played not only with the Bell Warriors, but with the Myers Riders and Ottawa Sooners football clubs. He has given back to his community of Carleton Place through his passion for music, performing at charity events and dances. Ethan has raised money for the Carleton Place Hospital, fundraised for families who lost their homes in fires, for those on organ transplant wait lists, and those who have lost family members through tragedy.

(Ethan Ryan of Carleton Place, a recipient of the Jim Wagdin Scholarship announced by the Bell Warriors for 2020. Photo: submitted)

Ethan says of his lessons learned days with the Warriors, “I was taught to value teammates, to give of myself, because someone was depending on me. I was taught to have compassion for my team mates and the opposing teams. I learned to be committed to myself and to my team. These lessons forced me to become responsible. Playing with the Bell Warriors required dedication and I learned to give respect and was given my fair share. I was an award winner with the Bell Warriors every year I played for them. The Bell Warriors made me the football player and person that I am today“.

Daniel Briere attends Ottawa University and is currently an Ottawa Gee-Gee player. He had been a player with the Bell Warriors Club for six seasons. Daniel has also been generous with his time volunteering for charitable events, as well as events through physical activity. He organized a Relay for Life event when in high school for two years. The event supports the Cancer Society and raised $98,000 in its first year and this year, due to COVID, it became a virtual event that raised $4,000. He also became a ‘buddy’ in the Ausome organization. Ausome gives children with autism a space to engage in physical activity. Daniel notes, “being brought up with the Bell Warriors and learning about teamwork has helped me to be successful with these events in my community”.

(Daniel Briere of Ottawa, a 2020 recipient of the Bell Warriors Jim Wagdin Scholarship for post-secondary education. Photo: submitted)

Daniel said of his Warrior days, “I’ve experienced moments that I will never forget for my entire life. The Bell Warriors football organization gave me the opportunity to create bonds that will last a lifetime and help me create a work ethic that I feel will keep with me until the day I retire from whatever is awaiting me in the future“.

Bell Warriors President, Paul Stewart, sums up nicely the generosity and importance of Kevin’s support, “Kevin’s considerable donation is not only appreciated but it is reaffirming that the Warriors are on the right track.  It’s a humbling pat-on-the-back to all of our volunteers who have selflessly given to their community over the years. We can’t thank Kevin Pidgeon and his family enough for continuing to value our club and goals.”


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