Crocus Plains football head coach Rob Dinsdale still remembers the first time he met Kevin Boyd.
“I would have been in grade nine in 1999. He was a big, imposing guy with a beard, shaved head. But the first time you meet him, he’s always there with a big smile and a handshake. Such a friendly, welcoming man.”
Boyd passed away suddenly on February 29, 2016 at the age of 46. He left behind his wife, Jordana, three kids, and a gaping hole in the Brandon football community.
“Kevin is singlehandedly responsible for keeping kids out of gangs in Brandon, for keeping kids alive,”explained Blaine Moroz, Crocus Plains assistant coach and one of Boyd’s best friends. “When Kevin passed, I got a message saying, ‘If I hadn’t met coach Boyd, I’d be dead.’ That is the absolute epitome of Boyd, he gave his life for everybody else.”
Boyd is being honoured this weekend as part of the Winnipeg High School Football League’s Senior Bowl.
“I just loved the sense of family he fostered in his team because it’s given my son, who’s in his first year of high school, a family and 60 brothers to go to school with and support him everyday,” Jordana Boyd said. “Kevin would be very honoured by this, and then he’d turn around and talk about the players because it’s all about you guys.”
As part of his legacy, a group led by Moroz is looking to build a dedicated football park in Brandon called Boyd Stadium. The project would give the Westman Youth Football Association a permanent home.
“We’re hoping that we do have a field to play on and a parking lot this year, those are our immediate needs,” said Moroz, who is also president of the WYFA. “We are hoping that all three levels of government will step up to help. We feel it’s a much needed, great project, and it gives kids a safe place to play sports for generations to come.”
The price tag for the stadium project is roughly $900,000. You can learn more about the project here.