EDMONTON, AB - Oilers alumni defenceman and Oilers Entertainment Group (OEG) Vice Chair and Alternate Governor Kevin Lowe joined esteemed company on Friday in Quebec City before puck drop between the Quebec Remparts and Saint John Sea Dogs.
Alongside the likes of Guy Lafleur, André Savard, Réal Cloutier, Mario Marois, and the late Maurice Barrette and head coach Maurice Filion, Lowe was named to the Remparts' All-Star Team from 1969 to 1985 as part of ongoing celebrations for the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League's (QMJHL) 50th anniversary.
"I have really fond memories of playing in Quebec City and I'm very proud of the honour," Lowe said to EdmontonOilers.com. "When I left my hometown to go play junior, I thought that was the pinnacle. Then I was fortunate enough to go on and play in the NHL and have success there. I have great memories of my days in Quebec City playing for the Remparts."
As a 17-year-old from Lachute, Quebec just 60 kilometres northwest of Montreal, Lowe joined the Remparts in 1976 and played in a defensive pair with fellow honouree Mario Marois. Two years later, in his final season in the QMJHL with the Remparts, Lowe was named the French club's first English-speaking captain and finished the campaign with 86 points (26G, 60A) in 60 games before being selected by the Oilers with their first-ever draft pick as an NHL club in 1979.
Lowe's leadership extends today off the ice to OEG in the role of Vice Chair and Alternate Governor seeking new business initiatives and promoting the growth and development of the organization alongside CEO and Vice Chair Bob Nicholson.
"Kevin showed excellent leadership as soon as he came to the Quebec Remparts," QMJHL commissioner Gilles Courteau said of Lowe's leadership. "At a very young age Kevin was identified as being a leader on the team, and it didn't take long for the coach and GM at the time to name him captain because of his leadership on and off the ice - certainly with the way he was playing as well.
"Kevin was very skilled at bringing everyone on the team together. He was a great leader."
The responsibility of choosing the all-stars was put to former players, managers, journalists, statisticians and scouts who were involved with the Remparts four decades ago. Being nominated by his former peers is a feeling that resonates for Lowe with the notable players that have come through the ranks of the Remparts.
"It means a lot because I know there were a lot of great players," Lowe said. "Like during my NHL career I was fortunate enough to play with a lot of great players, and I think of the players they easily could've selected ahead of me that I thought were great junior players."
Being welcomed back onto the ice in Quebec City to a standing ovation alongside the likes of Lafleur isn't a feeling Lowe will soon forget.
"I was standing out in the hallway before we went on the ice with Guy Lafleur and Andre Savard thinking how pretty special of a moment it was to walk on the ice with them and get a nice standing ovation from the fans," he added.
"There were some great memories for me here."