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Jody Shelley inducted in N.S. Sport Hall of Fame, speaks highly of Yarmouth, his former hometown

Jody Shelley pictured with Yarmouth Deputy Mayor Phil Mooney and Yarmouth Mayor Pam Mood at his Nov. 15 induction into the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame. Shelley always refers to Yarmouth as his hometown with great affection and has been an ambassador, of sorts, for the community.
Jody Shelley pictured with Yarmouth Deputy Mayor Phil Mooney and Yarmouth Mayor Pam Mood at his Nov. 15 induction into the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame. Shelley always refers to Yarmouth as his hometown with great affection and has been an ambassador, of sorts, for the community. - Contributed
YARMOUTH, N.S. —

It was a special night for former National Hockey League player Jody Shelley, who on Friday, Nov. 15, was inducted in the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame.

Shelley – a former Yarmouth resident who played in the local minor hockey program – spoke highly of Yarmouth during the induction night ceremony in Halifax.

“I was with some great people, great friends,” Shelley told Bruce Rainnie, CEO of the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame, recalling his years in Yarmouth, where he played peewee, bantam and midget rep hockey.

“It’s a wonderful community. The people make it so great. I’ve been to many places all over the world and when I travel, Yarmouth is always with me.”

See the video shared by Yarmouth Mayor Pam Mood, who with others from Yarmouth was at the ceremony:

Was thinking tonight would be great but didn’t expect to cry through it all!!!! The inductees into the NS Sports Hall of Fame are all awe inspiring. So tremendously proud of our very own Jody Shelley. Below is the video which says it all in a nutshell. Wow. Dreams.

Posted by Mayor Pam Mood on Friday, November 15, 2019

From Yarmouth, Shelley went on to play with the Halifax Mooseheads of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and to this day is considered the most popular Moosehead ever.

Asked by Rainnie how his popularity has endured for so long, Shelley said many fans likely identified with the fact that he was from a small town and not well-known.

“You know, I wasn’t supposed to make the team,” Shelley recalled. “I was from Yarmouth. No one really knew who I was, but I made the team and I became the captain ... I think everyone identifies with that. And I’m also a Nova Scotian, so I think that’s an advantage too.”

Referring to the three years he spent with the Mooseheads, he said, “I was on the ride of a lifetime I never thought I’d be on.”

He said the Mooseheads “are the upper echelon of Canadian hockey. I’m so proud of them.”

The 2019 Nova Scotia Hall of Fame induction ceremony was Friday night in Halifax.  The class of 2019 included, front row, from left:  to R: Henry Boutilier of Glace Bay (builder, baseball); Justine Colley-Leger of East Preston (athlete, basketball) and Roger Caulfield of Springhill (builder, basketball). Back row: Suzanne Moir of Dartmouth (athlete, soccer); Jackie Barrett of Halifax (athlete, powerlifting); Jody Shelley of Yarmouth (athlete, hockey); Morgan Williams of Cole Harbour (athlete, rugby). NICK PEARCE
The 2019 Nova Scotia Hall of Fame induction ceremony was Friday night in Halifax.  The class of 2019 included, front row, from left:  to R: Henry Boutilier of Glace Bay (builder, baseball); Justine Colley-Leger of East Preston (athlete, basketball) and Roger Caulfield of Springhill (builder, basketball). Back row: Suzanne Moir of Dartmouth (athlete, soccer); Jackie Barrett of Halifax (athlete, powerlifting); Jody Shelley of Yarmouth (athlete, hockey); Morgan Williams of Cole Harbour (athlete, rugby). NICK PEARCE

Shelley’s NHL career spanned about a dozen years, starting with the Columbus Blue Jackets and ending with the Philadelphia Flyers. He also played for the San Jose Sharks and New York Rangers.

Now 43, Shelley is a hockey colour commentator with Fox Sports Ohio.

Just as he is widely regarded as the Mooseheads’ all-time most popular player, Shelley’s popularity in southwestern Nova Scotia has endured.

The street where he played hockey in Yarmouth as a youth was renamed after him – Jody Shelley Drive during a 2013 community celebration – and he is a member of the Yarmouth area’s sports Hall of Fame.

He also has done much charitable work, notably with the annual golf event that bears his name – the Jody Shelley Golf Fore Health event – which has been a major annual fundraiser for the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation, having raised over half a million dollars to help with the purchase of hospital equipment. This year's golf tournament, held at the Digby Pines, raised over $43,000 towards the $235,000 cost of a new portable digital X-Ray machine for the Yarmouth Regional Hospital.

At the Nov. 15 Hall of Fame ceremony in Halifax, Shelley said it was great to share the evening with family members, friends and fans.

“It’s such an honour and a privilege to be a part of this,” he said.

Besides Shelley, also entering the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame this year were Jackie Barrett, powerlifting, Herring Cove; Justine Colley, basketball, East Preston; Suzanne Muir, soccer, Dartmouth; Morgan Williams, rugby, Dartmouth.

Entering as builders: Henry Boutilier, baseball, Glace Bay; and Roger Caulfield, basketball, Springhill.

Read more about the Hall of Fame Class of 2019.

REVISIT from 2013: Yarmouth renames street Jody Shelley Drive in community celebration

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