People are still learning to ski, thanks to Gordon McKenney
McKenney lived in Bedford and Goffstown and was a part-time ski instructor. When he retired from PSNH at 55, he began working full-time at Pats Peak until he died at 76. The creation of the Gordon McKenney Memorial Scholarship Fund was announced at his funeral in 2009.
David Chapman, former Pats Peak Ski School director, described Gordon McKenney as "one of the most professional and dependable ski instructors I have had the privilege of knowing."
"No matter how bitter cold, no matter what the conditions, dad would come in from a day of skiing with a huge smile," Lauren McKenney said.
"We thought we could get cute letters," McKenney said. "We do get some of that, although not often, but instead some tough ones. The one that most got us this year was a little girl that lives in the basement of someone's home. Her mom sleeps in the laundry room."
Donations can be sent by check to: Bertie Holland, Ski School Director Pats Peak Ski Area PO Box 2448 Henniker, NH 03242 ATTN: The Gordon McKenney Memorial Scholarship Fund. Checks should be made payable to: Youth Enrichment Services, Inc. Please add: "c/o The Gordon McKenney Memorial Scholarship Fund" in the memo line.
• M.J. LaFoley Foundation. M.J. LaFoley died at 16 while a freshman at the Holderness School.
The foundation provides an opportunity for deserving students to meet their special needs or achieve educational or amateur athletic goals through special programs, whether athletic, educational or artistic. M.J.'s Race for high school and college ski racers is known for the big food tent, give-aways and new T-Shirt design each year. The 20th annual race was held last March.
• The Franconia Ski Club and Cannon Mountain award four scholarships to attend the race club and four scholarships for kids to learn to ski or snowboard; all eight recipients also receive a season pass.
For more information or to donate: www.franconiaskiclub.com.
• The Josh Russell Ski Racing Scholarship Fund was established in 2004. Josh started to ski at age 4 at Pats Peak and was racing by 5.
He made it to the Junior Olympic level in downhill skiing and ski jumping.
He died at 25 in an auto accident. His family hosts the Josh Russell Memorial Race at Pats Peak and an annual ice fishing derby.
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