Faculty of Law

Faculty of Law
Faculty of Law

Queen’s Law members help score big win for kids’ charity in Taylor Hall tournament 

(August 4, 2017)

Tournament co-founders Taylor Hall (2nd left) and Kevin Bailie, Law’19 (middle), with Nicholas Osanic, aspiring member of  Law’25, Aaron Fransen, Law’04, and Phil Osanic, Law’91, LLM’02, at the charity event in downtown Kingston on July 29.
Tournament co-founders Taylor Hall (2nd left) and Kevin Bailie, Law’19 (middle), with Nicholas Osanic, aspiring member of Law’25, Aaron Fransen, Law’04, and Phil Osanic, Law’91, LLM’02, at the charity event in downtown Kingston on July 29. (Photo by Jackie Li)

Hockey heroes from three leagues – NHL, OHL and OUA – and players from sponsoring businesses faced off against each other in the downtown Kingston Metro parking lot on July 29. Central to the action at the 4th Annual Taylor Hall Charity Ball Hockey Tournament for the Boys and Girls Club of Kingston were two all-star Queen’s Gaels: Kevin Bailie, Law’19 (Artsci’17), and Spencer Abraham, Law’20. Also joining the play were Aaron Fransen, Law’04 (Artsci’01), and Phil Osanic, Law’91, LLM’02. 

The event is the brainchild of goaltender Bailie and his childhood and Major Junior A rival, Taylor Hall, now a star left-winger with the New Jersey Devils. 

“One night when I was in first-year undergrad, Taylor and I had a debate about who could build a better ball hockey team of former teammates,” says Bailie. “We did just that. Eventually some businesses found out and wanted to sponsor the event. It started gaining a lot of publicity and became what is my favourite day of the summer each year. We figured with that much exposure and potential we might as well use it to support a good cause, and that is why all proceeds go to the Boys and Girls Club of Kingston.”

Abraham, another former OHL competitor of Bailie’s and now his Gaels teammate, participated in the tournament for the third consecutive year and also pitched in to help Bailie with game-day organization. A defenceman whose hard work led to a stint playing some exhibition games with the NHL’s Florida Panthers, Abraham can empathize with the children. “Through my hockey experiences I noticed how much kids looked up to me as a player and the power I possessed in making a difference in their lives,” he says. “Hockey and the life skills I have learned playing the game have moulded me into the person I am today and I attend the event to give back to the community and raise money so these kids have the opportunity to live the same dream and acquire the same life skills.” 

Fransen, a Kingston Frontenacs and Queen’s Gaels alumnus, is considered by Bailie as such a role model to him. “We have similar backgrounds and as a mentor Aaron has been so helpful to me,” says Bailie. Now a partner with Stikeman Elliott in Toronto, Fransen played on a team of lawyers. Also on that team was Osanic, a Kingston lawyer and faculty member with Smith School of Business and Queen’s Law. 

Among the 63 celebrities, current NHL players in addition to Hall hitting the pavement included Calvin de Hann (New York Islanders), Ben Hutton (Vancouver Canucks) and Lawson Crouse (Arizona Coyotes). 

Tournament participant Spencer Abraham, Law’20, promoted the event on the Queen’s Law Facebook page and took over the school’s Snapchat with game-day updates.
Tournament participant Spencer Abraham, Law’20, promoted the event on the Queen’s Law Facebook page and took over the school’s Snapchat with game-day updates. 

With almost $20,000 raised, the real winners of the tournament are the children and youth in the Boys and Girls Club of Kingston who will reap the benefits of participating in after-school programs and summer camps. 

“The highlight for me was just seeing the smiles on the kids’ faces,” says Abraham. “To pass on that inspiration and love for the game to others who have the same goals and aspirations I once had is the ultimate prize for me.”

Bailie echoes that sentiment. “I loved the game between Kingston minor players and a celebrity squad,” he says, reflecting on his favourite sports memory from when he was nine and on a minor hockey team – skating on the Bay of Quinte with the Vancouver Canucks when Belleville native and then-coach Marc Crawford brought them to town between a Toronto-Ottawa series. 

“To think we may have just created such a life-long memory for 20 young kids feels amazing!” Bailie exclaims. “That’s why I do it and I hope I’m always in a position to do those sorts of things for deserving people.”

By Lisa Graham