Congratulations to the members of Team Canada, selected to represent Canada at the 2017 Powerchair Football World Cup in Florida. May the memory and example of the lives of those who gave their utmost for Powerchair Football, be with you in spirit while you are competing in Florida, inspiring you to see your lives without limits and to appreciate each others’ contribution to the building of this dynamic sport.
Here is an example of one athlete who gave his utmost, Angus Epp.
Powersoccer wasn’t just a sport for Angus. It was a way of life. It was his calling. Powersoccer gave Angus mobility, expanding his horizons, much like a powerchair did. Angus loved sports. Powersoccer was created for him and others like him. Angus shaped his life around Powersoccer. It gave him a feeling of connection, friends, dreams, focus and hope.
Angus Epp, #19, was a Powerchair Football athlete from 1997 to 2013 and assistant coach for the Surrey Transformers in British Columbia, Canada. He helped start the team along with his father, Gordon Epp, who was the coach. Angus understood how helping others is the key to helping yourself. One of his teammates commented that Angus was the most humble player he had ever played with.
Angus, at age 10, in 1998, was initiated into the world of Powersoccer through international tournament play. He played alongside veteran athlete Keith Knight, age 11, in San Jose, California. This experience expanded his view beyond the home team, giving him a vision of the role he would play in development of the sport, which included recruiting his parents into any plans of action.
After a few years of helping to reestablish a team in Vancouver, along with Dale McLeod, current member of Team Canada, Angus gave up the opportunity to continue playing on what was by now a more advanced team, to help grow the sport in nearby Surrey, BC. He thrived in his role as Team Captain nurturing several new athletes. The sport continued to develop provincially and by the time the idea of developing an international sport emerged in Canada, Angus was ready for it. When he first heard about the French style of play, he wanted to move to France and learn the game, then bring it back home to Canada.
Angus didn’t make it to France, but he did have the opportunity to participate in the development of a new international sport combining 3 styles of play, known today as Powerchair Football. At the same time, he and his family participated in developing Powerchair Football Canada.
Before attending the first Powerchair Football World Cup in Japan, in 2007, as part of the Canadian delegation, he wrote a song about his life called “The Road of Importance” and said: “I’m going to live my life to the Nth degree”. He certainly did live his life without limits. Going to the World Cup in Japan, Angus said, was the highlight of his life.
Angus has passed the torch onto the current members of Team Canada. May you carry it with pride, knowing that you carry a legacy of the efforts made by each and every Powersoccer athlete in Canada since the 1980’s, a legacy that will assist you in your own efforts to make this World Cup the highlight of your lives. Go, Canada, go!