‘He always steps up’: Meet the man behind Yorkton’s trophies
As the winter sports season finishes, the winners and some participants will be receiving medals or trophies for their efforts.
In the Yorkton area most trophies and medals come from one man.
Gary Lamb has been the owner of Park's Jewelry since 1974. The walls of the ‘Trophy Room’ are lined with different cups and medals that look silver and gold. And on the floor are half a dozen large trophies that will be awarded to the winners of a hockey tournament this coming weekend. It’s here where he makes awards for tournaments and community events.
Lamb is something of a community figure after coaching baseball and hockey teams in the area for almost forty years.
“Communities like Yorkton don't have enough Gary Lamb’s,” said Yorkton Chamber of Commerce President Mike Stackhouse. “He always steps up, he never hesitates. I came in here today on a separate matter to ask for his community support and it took him like three seconds to say yes."
Pictures are hung on one of the walls in the trophy room of some of his past protégés, which include NHL hockey players Derek Boogaard and Damon Severson.
He took coaching very seriously, referring to it almost as a duty.
“When I was a kid growing up somebody took the time to coach me, somebody took the time to help me advance at life and get better at things,” said Lamb.
His coaching career ended nearly three years ago. He had begun suffering from rheumatoid arthritis when his health rapidly deteriorated. He had five heart attacks in two months in 2016 and now must live a much less busy life.
He says that his health scare caused him to better focus on his own awards.
“I got to see my youngest granddaughter born. I get to see her [and] I get to see my other two grandchildren. So it's an amazing process, and the pain that you live through or go through, it's worth every minute once you see your grandkids,” he said.
Even though he's no longer active in the arena, he's happy his work is.
Whether for first place or a participation trophy, Lamb says the trophies he makes are important for those who receive them because they’re a source of encouragement, and the reaction from younger players winning his trophies makes it all worth it.
“It's an amazing process how their eyes light up, and you go ‘at least we made somebody happy,’" said Lamb.