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Coral enjoys Tootoo visit

Darrell Greer
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, July 6, 2011

CORAL HARBOUR - His home region was the focus of Jordin Tootoo's annual summer tour sponsored by the Nunasi Corp. and NorTerra Inc. this past month.

NNSL photo/graphic

Coral Harbour Mayor Dorothy Ningeocheak accepts a donation to the hamlet for its Nunavut Day celebrations from Rankin Inlet's Jordin Tootoo of the Nashville Predators during his Nunasi Corp.-sponsored tour of the Kivalliq in June of 2011. - photo courtesy of Noel Kaludjak

The regional tour began in Tootoo's hometown of Rankin Inlet and hit every Kivalliq community before concluding in Arviat.

Tootoo's visit was a big hit in every community, but arguably none more so than Coral Harbour.

Coral's community hall was packed for about three hours as Tootoo gave a motivational talk to local youth, signed numerous autographs and posed for a ton of photos.

Coral Mayor Dorothy Ningeocheak said Tootoo's visit was highly anticipated by the community.

She said the NHLer is a positive role model for Nunavut youth, and she was happy to see Coral kids get a chance to hear Tootoo talk about

following their dreams.

"The event went very well and everyone really seemed to enjoy themselves during Jordin's visit," said Ningeocheak.

"Everyone's used to watching him on TV, but it was great to have him here and the kids know more about who they're looking at and cheering for now.

"He made a good impression on our youth and it was encouraging to hear him say they can achieve just about anything, as long as they work hard and stay out of trouble.

"It was just a good, positive talk about all the good things to do out there in the world if we go for them."

Tootoo presented the hamlet with a donation towards its Nunavut Day celebrations on behalf of the tour sponsors while in Coral.

Ningeocheak said not all the Coral kids fully understand everything Tootoo went through in the past, but that really doesn't matter.

She said they admire him just the way he is.

"The kids look up to him because he made the NHL against all the odds.

"He spent a lot of time with the kids, and he stayed a long time at the hall signing autographs and having his picture taken with everyone.

"There were some adults here who were just as excited to spend some time with him as many of the kids.

"Everyone's really starting to realize just what Jordin has accomplished and, if he can do it, so can others."

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