By TRT Staff with notes from www.naiahf.org
The 2024 North American Indigenous Athletics Hall of Fame (NAIAHF) Banquet Weekend will arrive from March 15-16.
“By honouring and celebrating the empowered journey of these individuals and teams, the hope is their stories may inspire future generations to follow their dreams in athletics,” reads the NAIAHF website.
Of the announced inductees, two from Six Nations will see the spotlight in the athlete catagory, as will three additional familiar faces.
“Cameron ‘Cam’ Bomberry of the Mohawk Nation played six seasons of OLA Junior ‘A’ lacrosse. Bomberry scored 199 goals, added 286 assists for a total of 485 points. He played his first three seasons with the St. Catharines Athletics. In 1991, Bomberry played for the Six Nations Arrows to complete his junior career. In 1992, he was awarded the Most Valuable Player award as he captained the Arrows to the Minto Cup championship,” reads the NAIAHF website.
“Bomberry played twelve seasons of Senior Lacrosse in the MSL of Ontario. He also played one season with the Mohawk Stars in 2008 in the OLA Senior “B” league. Bomberry was a member of two Mann Cup championship teams, including the Six Nations Chiefs in 1994 and 1996. Over 242 games, Bomberry scored 281 goals, and had 335 assists for a total of 516 points. He was inducted into the Ontario Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2016.
Bomberry also played field lacrosse. He was a member of the U19 Champion team when Team Canada earned a Silver Medal. During an accomplished college career, Bomberry was a three-time All-American midfielder for Nazareth College, and a member of the NCAA Division III National Championship Team in 1992. In addition, Cam played for the Iroquois Nationals four times. He was a key player on the 2014 Bronze Medal winning team in the Federation of International Lacrosse Association.
Bomberry also played in the National Lacrosse League. He was the first overall selection in the 1994 draft. He also played for the Buffalo Bandits, New Jersey Storm and Rochester Knighthawks. Bomberry was a member of the Rochester Knighthawks winning the NLL Championship in 1997. In fourteen NLL seasons, Bomberry scored 256 goals, and had 464 assists for 720 total points in 206 games.
Bomberry continues to give back to the game and has experience leading lacrosse clinics. He has coached and played for several First Nations teams at both the National and International levels, including the Iroquois Nationals in field and box lacrosse.”
According to the NAIAHF website, “Phyllis Bomberry of the Cayuga Nation was a former Canadian softball player born in 1942. She played women’s intermediate softball with the Ohsweken Mohawks and helped the team win back-to-back provincial Intermediate “B” championships in 1960 and 1961.”
“After moving to Toronto to complete high school, she was quickly recruited to play catcher for the Carpetland Senior A Team in the Ontario Senior Women’s League. She helped the Carpetland team win Canadian Softball Championships in 1967 and 1968, and was named Top Batter, All-Star Catcher, and most valuable player (MVP) in 1967, and All-Star Catcher again in 1968.
In 1968, Bomberry became the first female recipient of the Tom Longboat Award, established 17 years earlier, to recognize outstanding Indigenous athletes in Canada.
She won a gold medal at the first Canada Summer Games in 1969 and she was named the Canadian MVP and All Star Catcher. Bomberry was posthumously inducted into 2023 Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in the Athlete category.”
Further recognition: Thomas and Phillip Barreiro, Mohawk, are multi-time Canadian Greco-Roman Wrestling National champions from the Akwesasne Reservation. Mekwan Tulpin, of the Mushkegowuk Cree, is a high-level and decorated women’s box and field lacrosse player. Ted Nolan, Anishnaabe of the Garden River first Nation, is a decorated OHL and NHL hockey player and coach.