New Ownership On The Way For The Leamington Flyers

A change in ownership is on the way for the GOJHL's Leamington Flyers.

Abe Fehr has been at the helm for eight years, but when word got out he was thinking of selling the team, a new ownership group of ex-junior players jumped at the opportunity — Fehr announced the sale with a thank you to fans Monday.

Essex Coach Cam Crowder, former junior player David Halliwill, retired NHLer Dan Jancevski, former Windsor Spitfire Craig Mahon, and Jason Melo make up that group.

Melo, who played Junior B, tells AM800 News it didn't take long for the group to make Fehr an offer.

"Abe was contemplating it and we got in touch. It wasn't something we really had to think twice about, it was an opportunity we were very interested in," he says, "We just talked to Abe, put a deal together and away we go. We're still hockey guys at heart and we're excited and looking forward to it."

The Flyers' made the league finals four years in a row and won two Western Conference Championships during the Fehr era. Melo says the plan is to keep that winning culture going.

"Hat's off to Abe, he's done a great job and he's made great strides with the organization," says Melo. "We're really just going to pick up where he left off and build on that and continue down the path of building a first class organization."

Having played junior hockey, Melo and his partners are looking forward to passing the experience onto another generation of young men.

"The life lessons and the people that influenced us on the ice and off the ice, we really feel that we can relay that back to the kids," he says. "We're tied into the community on the business side and we intend to stay that way, build on Abe's success. The teams staying in Leamington, we're committed to bringing championships here and that's what we're going to do."

Crowder stepped down as Head Coach and General Manager of the PJHL's Essex 73's shortly after the purchase was announced —  a post he's held since 2016.

Details of the sale haven't been release, but Melo says more information will be released in the coming weeks.

— with files from AM800's Rob Hindi.