McDonnell named Nelson’s top citizen

The man who lit the Olympic cauldron in Nelson and organized a celebration of the Civic Centre’s 75th birthday has been named citizen of the year.

Bill McDonnell

Bill McDonnell

The man who lit the Olympic cauldron in Nelson and organized a celebration of the Civic Centre’s 75th birthday has been named citizen of the year.

“Boy, 2010 was an eventful year for me,” says Bill McDonnell, who received the news this week.

The retired teacher and former Nelson Maple Leafs goaltender was the community’s designated torch bearer when the Olympic relay passed through the city.

He’s also heavily involved with KidSport, the regional sports council, and the Trafalgar hockey academy.

McDonnell is the 47th person to receive the citizenship award, first handed out in 1964.

He will be honoured by the Knights of Columbus at a banquet on April 9 at St. Joseph’s school. Tickets are on sale now.

Watch for a feature-length profile of McDonnell next week in the Star.