Four inductees join Leduc Sports Hall of Fame
The City of Leduc is pleased to announce four individuals have been inducted into the Leduc Sports Hall of Fame, which honours athletes, teams, leaders or buildings who have made a positive impact in the Leduc region through their involvement in the sport community. All inductees have made considerable contributions to their sport and the communities around them at local, provincial, national, international and professional levels.
The 2021 Sports Hall of Fame Inductees are:
- Blair Buttar
- Casson Masters
- Corbin Sharun
- Linda Christensen
Please note: Due to COVID-19, the next Leduc Sports Hall of Fame Induction Gala has been postponed to Nov. 5, 2022. At this time, we will celebrate the 2021 inductees alongside potential 2022 inductees.
Born in Edmonton and raised in Leduc, Blair Buttar started playing golf at the Leduc Golf and Country Club when he was 12. It quickly became obvious that he had found his passion. Highlights of his career include winning the 1992 Alberta Junior Championship, winning the 2000 Alberta Amateur Championship and finishing as a runner-up in the 2000 Canadian Amateur Championship.
Blair’s college career started at Midland College. Midland won the National Junior College Athletic Association’s National Championship in 1995. After receiving a scholarship to Texas A&M University, Blair was an NCAA II Honourable Mention All American his junior year. His senior year was highlighted with a win at the Lone Star Conference. He was also recognized as a 1997 NCAA II First Team All American and placed fifth in the NCAA II National Championship. He stayed on as a coach until 1999 while completing his Business Management degree.
The biggest highlight of his career was playing in the 2000 Canadian Open on the PGA Tour, where he got the chance to tee up with the best players in the world. Tiger Woods won the tournament.
Over the next 10 years Blair continued competing, representing Team Canada in 2001 at the Lake Macquarie Amateur and winning the 2006 Edmonton Open. He was a Canadian Tour Member in 2009 and was the 2010 PGA of Alberta Champion. While playing at the Leduc Golf and Country Club in 2014, Blair shot 59.
Blair finds it very rewarding to help other golfers improve their skills and achieve their goals. He lives in Leduc with his wife and two sons and enjoys recreational hockey and camping with his family.
Born in 1975 to Bill and Marilyn Masters, Casson grew up on an acreage in Leduc County where he and his two brothers (Curtis and Mark) would spend countless hours playing hockey together on their backyard pond.
From 1980–93 Casson played organized hockey in Leduc as part of Leduc Minor Hockey and the Leduc Junior Athletic Club. As captain of Leduc’s Midget AAA team, he received the 1992–93 Bob Johnson Memorial Trophy, presented to the top Alberta Midget AAA player for sportsmanship and dedication. Casson was a 1992–93 Mac’s Cup International Tournament All-Star and was awarded Fastest Skater in the Skills competition.
Casson went on to play for the Olds Grizzlys of the AJHL winning the 1993–94 Centennial Cup (72-8-2). Casson was recruited by several NCAA Division I programs, finally choosing Princeton University. Recognized as one of the fastest players in college hockey, he was voted to the ECAC 1994–95 all-rookie team and the 1997–98 ECAC all-tournament team. His final year he captained Princeton to its first-ever ECAC championship and NCAA tournament bid. Casson graduated from Princeton University in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in biology.
In 1998–99 Casson joined the Canadian Men’s National Team based in Calgary. That year Casson represented Canada in tournaments all over the world, a season highlighted by winning Canada’s eighth Spengler Cup (1998). Casson then played for two years overseas in the Sekonda Superleague, winning the league championship in 1999–2000.
In 2014, Casson and his Olds Grizzlys teammates were inducted into the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame. He now lives in New York with his wife (Liz) and two children (Kate and Drew). He continues to enjoy playing hockey, and actively coaches youth sports.
Corbin Sharun first started playing football at age seven with the Leduc Atom Bobcats. He played all his years of minor football with Leduc, winning numerous awards with the Ti-Cats. He then attended Edmonton’s Strathcona Composite High School, where he was a three-year starter for the Lords.
Corbin was a powerful player who stood out from the crowd, garnering recognition wherever he played. At Strathcona he was named rookie of the year, had the most thrown touchdowns in the league in each of his first two years, and won three straight city championships with the Lords.
After receiving a scholarship from St. Francis Xavier University, he played for two years in Nova Scotia before returning home due to a family member’s illness. He played his next two years as a safety with the Edmonton Wildcats of the CJFL, and was named an All Canadian defensive back.
Corbin was selected 43rd overall by the Edmonton Eskimos in the sixth round of the 2010 CFL Draft, and quickly cemented his spot on the team roster. In the 2010 season he led the team with special teams tackles. In 2011, he tied an Eskimo single-season record with 25 special teams tackles, the second-highest total in the CFL at the time. In the 2012 season, he scored his first CFL touchdown after catching a pass during a botched field goal.
Corbin retired from the CFL in 2016, and having fulfilled his dream of playing football professionally, he fulfilled another life-long dream and joined the Edmonton Police Service. He loves the team atmosphere and the opportunity to give back to the community, and enjoys working out and mountain biking in his spare time.
Linda Christensen moved to Leduc with her husband Jens in 1973 when they were newly married. Their first son, Danny, was diagnosed with Down Syndrome, and it was this circumstance that launched Linda on her journey of spearheading Special Olympics Leduc.
Danny attended an early education program in West Edmonton, but Linda wanted to find local opportunities for him. There were few options in Leduc at that time. As Danny grew older, he attended soccer and swimming with his younger siblings, and Linda began working with Special Olympics Alberta to try to bring an affiliate to Leduc. In 1989, when Danny was 16, she became the chairperson of a three-member board for Special Olympics Leduc.
The program started out small, but soon word began to spread. By the spring of 1990 they had 15 registered athletes. They offered bowling at first, then they added floor hockey. Linda worked tirelessly to meet the needs of the growing program. Her leadership role was integral to its success. Over the years the program grew to include swimming, soccer, curling, T-ball, bocce ball and basketball. In 1992, one of Leduc’s athletes was named the Special Olympics Alberta Athlete of the Year. In 1994 two of their swimmers competed in the Canadian Special Olympics in Halifax, and in 2017 their curling team won silver at the Special Olympics Alberta Winter Games in Grande Prairie.
The program continued thriving until Linda’s retirement after 30 years of leading it. Now, Linda is enjoying the extra time she can spend with her three children and six grandchildren, although she dearly misses the Special Olympics. She credits the program with giving Danny and other special needs athletes in the community great opportunities to grow, build confidence and socialize. Danny still enjoys bowling.