Known to most as “Bingo Joe”, the late Joe Brandon was a fixture around the Waywayseecappo Community Complex.
Whether he was organizing Friday Night Bingo or watching the Wolverines, Joe Brandon was one of the most recognizable faces around the rink. Following his passing, Wolverines Head Coach and General Manager Taylor Harnett spoke about his relationship with Joe, and what went into naming a trophy after him.
“When I came to Waywayseecappo last November, I didn’t know anyone,” Harnett explained. “I found myself in the arena a lot by myself. Joe was always right next door to me at the bingo hall, he came around and we talked quite a bit about the past and the future of the Wolverines, how the community thrived towards the Wolverines in years past and how we can make it successful again. He was very passionate about the team right up to the last time I was able to speak to him. He was a person that I really looked forward to seeing every day at the rink. ”
“The players would help out at Thursday night bingo and get to mingle with members of the community. Joe was always quick to phone me one minute after seven if they weren’t there asking me if they were coming. The players loved talking to Joe and he didn’t mind talking their ear off about the team. He never talked about the team in a negative way, he saw a brighter future in this team.”
Many organizations, both amateur and professional find a way to honour someone that impacted the team in one way or another, and for Harnett, it seemed like the perfect fit to honour Joe Brandon.
“We had an opportunity to recognize him, and we came up with the idea that every year during training camp, we would name our black and yellow intrasquad game champion, the recipient of the Joe Brandon Cup.”
“I felt he was the perfect guy. I talked to his family about it and they supported the idea and loved it. We had to scramble to find a trophy that was fitting of his big heart and we found one. The game went great and we had a good turn out with a presentation to his family. It’s something that will hopefully continue on forever, as long as I’m here, there’s always going to be a Joe Brandon Cup,” Harnett concluded.”