International Ice Hockey Federation

Volunteer Stories

Volunteer Stories

Mary Tallon, 50/50 seller in Toronto

Published 28.12.2014 22:04 GMT-5 | Author Adrienne Middlebrook & Alan Hudes
Volunteer Stories
Mary Tallon works as a volunteer in Toronto.
After cheering on Team Canada in the 2009 IIHF World Junior Championship in Ottawa, Mary Tallon is back at the World Juniors as a volunteer.

The 2009 IIHF World Junior Championship semifinal in Ottawa, Ont., was seconds away from ending in a Russian victory. With Canada down 5-4, head coach Pat Quinn called goaltender Dustin Tokarski to the bench in favour of an extra attacker.

“(There) were 5.4 seconds left and I was thinking we would [have to] fight for a bronze,” said Mary Tallon, a fan who had travelled from Toronto, Ont., to cheer on Canada’s National Junior Team.

It was at that moment Jordan Eberle scored to force overtime, one of the most memorable moments in Canadian World Juniors history.

“I just stood up and made eye contact with this one guy and we couldn’t even scream – I couldn’t even believe what was happening in front of me. I would vote for that kid [Eberle] for Prime Minister.”

Canada went on to win the game in a shootout, and beat Sweden in the gold medal game.

It was Mary’s World Juniors experience in Ottawa that inspired her to volunteer for the 2015 tournament in Toronto. In 2009, Tallon struck up a conversation with a volunteer ticket taker, who explained the role of volunteers.

“I wanted to see what the whole other side of the event was like,” says Tallon. “I knew what it was like to be a fan and now I know what it’s like to be a volunteer.”

This year she is enjoying her role at the Air Canada Centre, selling 50/50 tickets to hockey fans from all over the world.

“It’s great to meet like-minded people who are into hockey, and talk to fans from different countries,” she says. “It gets you out of your shell.”

Continue reading

If Tallon’s luck continues, she will be able to be a part of more exciting World Juniors moments – this time as a volunteer.

“We [Canada] are a very proud country and it shows at hockey games. That’s when the flags come out and everyone is showing their pride. It’s exciting.”


Back to Overview