Be The Best.

And the award goes to…

The cool thing about the Chris Friesen Memorial Award is that you don’t ‘win’ it by necessarily scoring the most goals.  It’s about what happens on the field for sure…but it’s also about what happens off the field.  It’s about someone who is making a difference, changing lives and living with Chris’ passion to BE THE BEST.

Here are some details from the official terms of reference that Simon Fraser University has on this fund.  This is significant because these words will stay forever linked to this award.  We think that’s very cool.


The Christian Friesen Memorial Endowment Fund was established in 2010 in memory of Christian Friesen. Funds for the endowment fund were donated by friends and family. The endowment fund supports the Christian Friesen Memorial Award.

Christian (Chris) Douglas Friesen was born on January 14, 1993.  He passed away on March 25, 2010.

Chris’ passion was lacrosse.  He represented his hometown of Langley on many occasions and represented his Province of British Columbia on the national stage in both box lacrosse and field lacrosse.  One of his crowning achievements was to be named to the All-star Team at the National Field Championship in Winnipeg, September 2009.

Letters of interest from multiple universities in the United States had been received, but Simon Fraser was still very much at the top of Chris’ list for consideration.

Chris had a strong affiliation with the Burnaby Mountain Selects program run by the SFU lacrosse coaches.  The involvement in this program pushed him academically and athletically. Chris was determined to Be The Best.

Chris’ passion for life and his incredible smile, personality, kindness and compassion was echoed by over 2,800 people who joined his Facebook remembrance page within days of his passing.

The recipients of this award are encouraged to Be The Best and to change the world.


When Brent (one of SFU’s head coaches) whispered the name of the recepient to me just before the dinner on Saturday, I loved the choice the Coaches had made.

The inaugural winner of the Chris Friesen Memorial award is Luke Genereux.  Luke was one of a number of assistant coaches who were usually college players themselves and were like older brothers to the boys in the BMS program.  Luke played with Chris.  Taught Chris.  Chris really looked up to Luke as a role model, superb lacrosse player and as a person.  You can see Luke’s profile here.

As parents and for Max too, we couldn’t think of a better way to kick this award train off!  Congratulations Luke.  You are hereby challenged to BE THE BEST as you explore the future and build your career and life experiences.  As we told you personally on Saturday night, we are very proud of you.  Great stuff!!

Here’s a pic of Ingrid and I with Luke.

This night had been circled on our calendar for many months.

It has come and it has gone…and it’s sort of cool to think that in another 363 days or so, another young man will be challenged to BE THE BEST and continue to live with focus, kindness, desire, passion, drive and intensity.

Chris…your passion will fuel us all.

Congrats Luke!!

Be The Best.

Be The Best rolls into Saskatoon

Chris, 41 (middle), gets ready for action in Winnipeg 2009

One year ago this weekend, Ingrid and I along with other parents and families followed our sons to the National Field Lacrosse tournie held in Winnipeg.

That tournie rolls into Saskatoon this Labour Day weekend.

Chris LOVED this tournament.

When he won a place on the national all-star team, announced at the tournament banquet, it was a moment of achievement that was the culmination of goal setting, hard work, practice, and more hard work.  It meant the world to him…although he would not say that publicly.

When I got a call a couple of months back that both the U16 and U19 teams from British Columbia would be wearing a CF on their jerseys, our family was both humbled and proud.

Boys, when you put on those jerseys, know that Chris will be there with you in spirit.  It was the shoulder to shoulder combat that he loved.  He wanted to win badly and he knew that winning came from hard work on the defensive end of the field and taking care of each other.

He knew that winning was much more than adding up the collective skill level of each player.  It was about working together as a team.

He knew that leadership is something you didn’t talk about, you DID.  If you wanted your team to play hard, you played hard.  If you wanted your team to be physically fit, you were physically fit.

We wish Team BC all the very best of luck (remembering you make your own luck!) this weekend.

One of my favourite pics of Chris in action. (Winnipeg 2009)

To all the other teams, Chris would love to strip the ball from you, race down the field and pass to an Attack for the winning goal.  He’d then be the first one to take off his helmet at the end of the game, flash you that million dollar smile, tell you that you played a good game (and mean it) and talk about staying connected.

All the very best to each Provincial team represented this weekend.  That’s Be The Best.