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Garvie continues SO roll

Eileen Garvie, 71, of Antigonish is an experienced Special Olympic athlete, who has experience on both the national and international stage. She will represent Team Nova Scotia in bocce, on her home turf, in the 2018 Games. Corey LeBlanc
Eileen Garvie, 71, of Antigonish is an experienced Special Olympic athlete, who has experience on both the national and international stage. She will represent Team Nova Scotia in bocce, on her home turf, in the 2018 Games. Corey LeBlanc - Corey LeBlanc

Bocce player, 71, returns to national stage

When it comes to being a multi-sport athlete, the likes of Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders could learn a thing or two from Eileen Garvie.

The Antigonish native has represented Nova Scotia in Special Olympics’ competition – in both the winter and summer national games – on many occasions and in several sports.

Garvie, who has also competed internationally, has skated, skied, raced and played floor hockey – just to name a few of her athletic endeavors.

This year, on her home turf, the 71-year-old will mark more than half a century of athletics, when she participates in bocce during the 2018 Special Olympics Canada Summer Games.

“It is going to be exciting,” the soft-spoken competitor said, when it comes to playing in front of family and friends.

Garvie has competed in bocce for more than 14 years.

“I like it a lot. I have so much fun,” she said.


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Cathy MacDonald, who has coached her over that span, called Garvie “super, super dedicated.”

“She is very coachable. She would stand on her head, if she thought it would help make her better,” MacDonald said.

She added Garvie “always tries really hard.”

MacDonald noted, although she is a second-to-none competitor, Garvie always remains “super positive,” no matter the results.

“It doesn’t matter whether she wins medals or not,” she said.

MacDonald added Garvie has a “perfect attitude.”

“Eileen is so supportive of her fellow athletes and is always helpful,” she said. 

Garvie is looking forward to staying on the St. F.X. campus; not to mention the great food and other offerings, including the traditional dance.

“I can’t wait to meet all the friends I have made, and making new ones,” she said.

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