Tributes paid to stalwart of British ice hockey

The Elite Ice Hockey League has expressed its sadness over the passing of Gary Moran during the Christmas period.

Everyone connected with the Elite Ice Hockey League is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Gary Moran over the Christmas period
Everyone connected with the Elite Ice Hockey League is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Gary Moran over the Christmas period

Gary’s passion and dedication to ice hockey saw him involved with the sport for more than 40 years.

He will be terribly missed both at the Nottingham Panthers and as a member of the league’s board.

Chairman Neil Black spoke on behalf of the Panthers: “Gary, GM the GM, was the pulse of the Panthers for over 25 years, a real legend whose contribution to all things black and gold was truly incredible.

“We will all miss him enormously and our thoughts and condolences go out to Audrey, Jo, Paul and Stef and all of their family at this very sad time.”

The Panthers paid tribute to Gary before their game at against the Sheffield Steelers on Monday, December 27, a match that saw the Panthers defeated by the Steelers by 4 to 1 in a.

Meanwhile, the Sheffield Steelers also paid tribute to Moran.

A statement released by the club stated: “Moran served the Panthers for over 30 years in various capacities including that of general manager.

“After fighting off heart disease Gary contracted cancer earlier this year and was recently admitted to hospital.

“Steelers understand that Gary passed away this morning peacefully in the company of his family.

“Everyone at the Steelers send their condolences to Gary’s wife Audrey and the Moran family including son Paul, a former Steeler.”

The Steelers’ statement concluded: “The ice hockey world lost a fighter this morning.”

Ice Hockey UK were also deeply saddened to hear about his passing and the organisation said itsthoughts were with his family.

Gary had been involved in the sport since the mid-1980s, starting as a radio reporter covering the Nottingham Panthers for Radio Trent.

He first got involved with the Panthers as marketing manager before taking over as GM in the late 1990s and oversaw the transformation of the franchise from a rink-based club to an arena team when they moved to the National Ice Centre ahead of the 2000-2001 season.

IHUK general secretary, Andy French, said: “Our thoughts are with his wife Audrey and all the Moran family at this difficult time.

“I have known Gary for over 30 years and he was the heart and soul of the Panthers for much of that time.

“He was at the forefront of Panthers’ transformation to the arena from the old small rink in Nottingham – and oversaw a huge growth in attendances.

“He has been part of UK ice hockey for as long as I can remember and the sport will be sadder place without him.”