OTTAWA, ONTARIO – Olympian and National Program assistant coach Marc Gagnon was unveiled today as one of five phenomenal alumni who will be inducted into the Canada Games Hall of Honour at the PEI 2023 Canada Winter Games in February. Joining Gagnon in the Class of 2023 are fellow decorated Olympians Heather Moyse and Sami Jo Small, trailblazing builder Vicki Keith, and distinguished alum Dr. Heather Morrison.
A legend in short track speed skating, Gagnon represented Quebec at the 1991 Canada Games in Prince Edward Island. The five-time Olympic medallist enjoyed over a decade of success on the national team and finished his career as one of Canada’s most decorated short track speed skaters. In addition to his Olympic success, which included three gold medals, he was crowned overall World Champion on four occasions (1993, 1994, 1996, 1998), earning an impressive 35 medals along the way.
Gagnon joined Canada’s national short track program as an assistant coach in 2021, where he supports both the men’s and women’s national teams. He had been a part of the coaching staff at the Canadian Regional Training Centre (CRCE) in Montreal since 2010, where he was responsible for preparing the sport’s rising stars. He was promoted to head coach of the CRCE in 2014, a role he held until joining the national team coaching staff in 2021.
The native of Chicoutimi, Que., becomes the first short track athlete inducted into the Hall of Honour, joining long track athletes Catriona Le May Doan (2011) and Cindy Klassen (2019). Gagnon was previously inducted into the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame in 2007 and Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 2008. He is also a member of Speed Skating Canada’s Hall of Fame and the organization’s annual award for Male Short Track Athlete of the Year – a title he was honoured with eight times throughout his career – is now named in his honour.
“The Canada Games are the best thing that can happen to a young athlete. It is not only one of the greatest events they will ever participate in, but it also prepares them emotionally for the Olympic stage. Personally, and this is no lie, outside of the Olympics the Canada Winter Games are the best competition I have ever been a part of. I was crying at the end when they put out the flame. And honestly, for those that live this and don’t get to go participate at the Olympics, it is a very satisfying alternative.”Marc Gagnon
Established in 2007, the Hall of Honour recognizes exceptional Canada Games alumni and individuals who have sparked greatness by distinguishing themselves during the Canada Games and beyond, while contributing to the growth of the Canada Games Movement.
“We are thrilled to welcome this esteemed class of remarkable alumni into the Canada Games Hall of Honour. Marc, Heather, Sami Jo, Vicki and Dr. Morrison have all sparked greatness throughout their illustrious careers in sport and beyond, and it is a privilege to recognize their outstanding contributions to the Canada Games Movement.”Evan Johnston, Chair, Canada Games Council
The Hall of Honour induction ceremony will take place on February 17, 2023 in Charlottetown, on the eve of the 2023 Canada Winter Games in Prince Edward Island.