Come on home to Oak Bay High

Youthful-looking Oak Bay Barbs player Phil Mack

Youthful-looking Oak Bay Barbs player Phil Mack

Eighty years reunion weekend features social event plus third sports hall of fame induction ceremony

This year’s list of Oak Bay High sports hall of fame inductees is as diverse as it gets.

There’s a triathlon pioneer, an Olympic medallist rower, a standout two-sport man, an international rugby stalwart, a legendary runner, a world masters record-setting swimmer and a longtime coach who prepared hundreds of student athletes for high school competition.

They come from various eras: from swimmer Joan Parnell (nee Morgan, class of ’46) and runner Phil Matson (class of ’49) up to rugby star Phil Mack (class of 2003).

“I’m definitely very proud of being inducted,” says Mack, who heads to England next week with Canada’s rugby sevens team for a tournament. “There’s a lot of class names that are on that wall: Winston Stanley, Mark Wyatt, Jared Barker – and that’s just the rugby guys that I know.”

This third wave of inductions bring the school’s hall of fame membership to 46 in the categories of builders, coaches and athletes.

Oak Bay High has long prided itself on excellence in athletics, among other facets of student life, and places great importance on recognizing school and post-secondary sporting accomplishments, says vice-principal Murray Allen, who coached Mack in high school.

“From top to bottom, you’ve got people that have represented Canada, gone on to get scholarships in the U.S., set Canadian records and won Olympic medals,” Allen says of this year’s group.

The hall’s class of 2011 also includes 1984 Olympic silver medal-winning rower Marilyn Campbell (nee Brain, class of ’77), basketball and baseball player/coach Don Burrows (class of ’69) and swimmer/triathlete Monty Holding (class of ’62) in the athlete category and longtime Monterey school coach Karen Evans as a builder.

The seven will be recognized in a Saturday night ceremony at the University of Victoria’s Commons Block which takes place amid 80th reunion festivities for Oak Bay High on May 14-15.

Hosted by the Oak Bay Alumni Association, the reunion is open to anyone who has graduated or gone to Oak Bay High. A social gathering happens from 7 p.m. to midnight. Tickets are $20 and include one drink and hors d’oeuvres. On the Sunday, the school will be open for tours from 1 to 4 p.m.

A 3-D model and artist’s rendering of the new Oak Bay High, slated for opening in 2013, will be on display.

To purchase tickets or for more information for the UVic gathering go to

– with files from Vivian Moreau

Hall nominees

• For information on nominating someone for the Oak Bay High sports hall of fame, visit or call the school.