Hockey Hall of Fame - Stanley Cup Journals: 2011, 18

A former member of the Kitchener Rangers, Gregory Campbell brought the Stanley Cup to the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium.
A former member of the Kitchener Rangers, Gregory Campbell brought the Stanley Cup to the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium.
(Walt Neubrand/Hockey Hall of Fame)
Just minutes from Rich Peverley's home in Guelph by way of Highway 401 sits the city of Kitchener, Ontario, a historic city of 200,000. And it's in Kitchener that Gregory Campbell started his time with the Stanley Cup on July 29, joined by his Dad and Mom (Colin and Heather) and his sisters Lauren and Courtney.

Gregory's Kitchener home is spotless, and the perfect place to have photographs taken with the Stanley Cup.

Now, when we say spotless, we mean immaculate, and it won't surprise his family or teammates to know that Gregory is considered a 'neat freak.' In fact, he insisted on washing the Stanley Cup three times while the trophy was in his possession!

A Memorial Cup champion with the Kitchener Rangers in 2003, Gregory took the Stanley Cup to his hockey alma mater, the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium Complex.

Gregory Campbell and the Stanley Cup spent some time at the Grand River Hospital.
Gregory Campbell and the Stanley Cup spent some time at the Grand River Hospital. (Walt Neubrand/Hockey Hall of Fame)
Reminiscing, he wandered into the dressing room and sat in his old stall with the Cup beside him. The Rangers keep the name plaques of everyone who sat in the stall affixed in the dressing room, and Campbell got a kick looking at who has sat where he once dressed, and surveyed the room for where teammates once prepared for battle.

After delighting the children who are spending time at Grand River Hospital with a visit from a real live hockey champion with the Stanley Cup, Gregory visited the billets who took him in when he was playing junior.

The Slipecs were clearly like second parents to Gregory, and still have photos displayed of a teenaged Gregory. Ann Slipec cried when Gregory appeared at the door with the Stanley Cup. "I am so proud of you," she sobbed. "You so deserve this honour!"

 Gregory Campbell and his former Kitchener billet Ann Slipec looking over the names engraved on the Stanley Cup.
Gregory Campbell and his former Kitchener billet Ann Slipec looking over the names engraved on the Stanley Cup.
(Walt Neubrand/Hockey Hall of Fame)

The Campbells dropped by Lauren's house to show her son, Alexander, the treat that Uncle Gregory brought over to show him.

The Campbells drove to nearby Tillsonburg where Gregory was born and raised and where his parents still live today. While the family enjoyed a bowl of his Mom's delicious yellow bean soup, Gregory (surprise!) scrubbed the Stanley Cup.

Colin Campbell, the National Hockey League's Director of Hockey Operations and a former player himself, pulled up to the house in an old truck. His wife could only laugh as she shook her head. "That old truck looks like something Clint Eastwood would drive in one of his movies!"

It wasn't long before more than a hundred guests arrived at the farm for a dinner-time celebration with the Cup. Catered with scrumptious shrimp, bruschetta and fruit, the guests included family, friends and former teammates, including Steve Montador and Stephen Weiss, who played with Campbell on the Panthers.

Gregory Campbell taking time to wash the Stanley Cup.
Gregory Campbell taking time to wash the Stanley Cup. (Walt Neubrand/Hockey Hall of Fame)
The party wound down about midnight, but before the Stanley Cup left, there was a function to perform – you've got it! Gregory had to wash the trophy.

The next morning (July 30), Gregory took the Stanley Cup to the home of a family friend who is struggling with cancer, and then drove over to the Tillsonburg Community Centre for a public celebration. More than 1,000 fans celebrated with Gregory, getting pictures of the Cup and autographs from the Bruins' forward.

It was back to the family home for lunch, and Gregory took advantage of the time to get pictures taken with the Stanley Cup around the farm, including poses on a refurbished tractor.

Before the Stanley Cup moved on to the next champion, it had to be cleaned, and there was Gregory, giving it one final scrub before he let it go.

* * *

The Bruins' sensational rookie, Tyler Seguin, gets his turn next, and we'll tell you all about it on Friday in the Stanley Cup Journal.


Kevin Shea is the Editor of Publications and Online Features for the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Gregory Campbell and his parents sharing a moment with the Stanley Cup.
Gregory Campbell and his parents sharing a moment with the Stanley Cup. (Walt Neubrand/Hockey Hall of Fame)

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