Langley sports booster dies

A local businessman who started the local ice hockey association for girls died on Boxing Day.

William Robert (Bill) Bettles died with his family by his side.

The husband, father of three daughters and grandfather was in the plumbing business for four decades.

He also served on the Township Parks and Recreation Commission for three years, helped raise funds to light the park for the Aldergrove Men’s Fastpitch League, and served as president of the Aldergrove Ringette Association.

In 1988 he started the Lower Mainland Ringette League and served as its first president.

A ringette team manager for years, Bettles mnaged Team BC’s Canada Winter Games squad.

He was also a girls’ softball coach and administrator with the Langley Girls Fastpitch Association for many years.

Bettles started the Langley Girls Ice Hockey Association in 1995 so girls throughout the Fraser Valley could play the sport.

In 2009, Bill started and was General Manager for a National Ringette League team, the Fraser Valley Avalanche, offering unprecedented complete funding for 18 female athletes competing at an elite level of ringette in the province.

He created the Fraser Valley Ringette Associations’ Michelle Van Dale Memorial annual scholarship award and in 2011 was honoured as a Community Sport Builder award from Pacific Sport Fraser Valley for his work on behalf of the community.

A funeral is scheduled for Jan. 7 at the Valley View Funeral Home in Surrey. The family is asking that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the BC Transplant Society or Vancouver General Hospital.

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