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BU decides to rename old gym in honour of Champ

Brandon University announced Friday it has renamed the original campus gymnasium in honour of former chancellor Henry Champ, who passed away earlier this year.

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Brandon University announced Friday it has renamed the original campus gymnasium in honour of former chancellor Henry Champ, who passed away earlier this year. (FILE PHOTO)

Brandon University has named the original campus gymnasium in honour of the late Henry Champ.

"Henry was a sports enthusiast," BU president Deborah Poff said of Champ, who was the university’s chancellor from 2008-12.

"During his student days at Brandon University, Henry was a remarkable athlete and passionate supporter. He stayed connected to BU sports through his entire life and recruited top athletes to campus. Our university is a better place because of Henry Champ’s dedication and commitment."

A commemorative ceremony for the Henry Champ Gymnasium is planned for the new year.

A native of Hartney, Champ attended BU in 1957 and 1958. He would travel the world through the next five decades as one of the world’s top foreign correspondents, reporting from places including El Salvador, Nicaragua, Chile, the Middle East, Vietnam and Washington, D.C.

Despite his globetrotting career, Champ never forgot his Wheat City roots, serving BU in many capacities including as member of the Brandon University Foundation.

In 2005, he was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree for his service.

Installed as BU’s sixth chancellor in November 2008, Champ enjoyed visiting and reminiscing about his own time spent on campus.

Thanks to online broadcasting, he rarely missed a Bobcats game and took part in a Bobcat Booster Club meeting days before his passing in September.

Champ had a special interest in recruiting international students to BU — including Bobcat point guard Ilarion Bonhomme, Canada West Rookie of the Year in 2012.

Opened in 1965, the Henry Champ Gymnasium has been home to four Canadian university national championship teams.

The storied space is currently being modernized as part of BU’s $24.3-million Healthy Living Centre, with the gym scheduled to be ready in the spring of 2013.

» Submitted

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition December 8, 2012

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Brandon University has named the original campus gymnasium in honour of the late Henry Champ.

"Henry was a sports enthusiast," BU president Deborah Poff said of Champ, who was the university’s chancellor from 2008-12.

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Brandon University has named the original campus gymnasium in honour of the late Henry Champ.

"Henry was a sports enthusiast," BU president Deborah Poff said of Champ, who was the university’s chancellor from 2008-12.

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