John Cannon, who was described as one of the best rugby players to have ever come out of Abbotsford, passed away on March 19, 2016, at the age of 35. John began playing rugby in high school, first playing rugby at WJ Mouat Secondary and then for Abbotsford Senior, from where he graduated in 1998. He first represented Canada on an Under-17 tour to England in 1996 at the age of 15, followed by the Canada U-19s at age 17, Pacific Pride at age 18. He earned his first Senior Men’s cap at age 20, and a total of 39 caps (31 at 15s and 8 at 7s.) He played 6 years in England in what is now the Championship League.
The John Cannon Memorial Fund was established in 2016 following John’s passing. The Fund’s purpose is to provide financial assistance to aspiring Abbotsford rugby players who wish to pursue representative rugby. The first grant was awarded in 2017 and grants have been awarded in all subsequent years.
Recent awards have been presented as follow:
- 2017 – Tausani Levale – Canada Sr. Women’s 15’s Canada Sr. Women’s 7’s
- 2018 – Jake Thiel – Canada Sr. Men’s 7’s
- 2018 – Mackenzie Carson – Canada U-20 Women’s 15’s, Canada Sr. Women’s 15’s, Saracens Premiership England
- 2019 – Josh Thiel – Pacific Pride, Canada Sr. Men’s 15’s, San Diego Legion (MLR)
- 2019 – Noah Bain – University of Victoria, Canada University 7’s, Canada Sr. Men’s 7’s
- 2020 – Kyra Peary – University of Victoria, Castaways Women’s Premiership 15’s, Rugby Canada Development Academy.
- 2021 – James Thiel – University of Victoria, Canada U-18 Camp
- 2021 – Shalaya Valenzuela – University of Victoria, Maple Leaf Academy, 2021-2022 Thunder Rugby Indigenous Player of the Year.
Call for applications including a cover page template and application form for 2022 are posted on the Abbotsford Rugby Club website (https://www.abbotsfordrugby.com/) and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/abbotsfordrugby).
Cheques can be made to the Canadian Rugby Foundation and addressed to:
Canadian Rugby Foundation
709 Yates St.
PO Box 8003
USE THE FORM BELOW TO DONATE TO THE JOHN CANNON MEMORIAL AWARD FUND: