Border Bruin goalie dies in fire at Ontario home

Boundary Sentinel
By Boundary Sentinel
March 30th, 2013

UPDATE: Border Bruins send condolences to the Dunsmuir family

The Grand Forks Border Bruins is saddened by the “extremely tragic” death of goalie Robert Dunsmuir, said Border Bruins president Martin Vanlerberg.

Dunsmuir, 19, died alongside his mother, father and brother when their home caught fire in East Gwillimbury, Ontario on Friday, March 29.

Dunsmuir, who played goalie for the Border Bruins over the 2012/2013 season, had returned home in January 2013. According to a CBC report, the Junior A Hockey team the Owen Sound Attack had drafted him.

“He was an amazing young man and we were so blessed and lucky to have him on board (with the Bruins),” said Vanlerberg during a private interview with The Boundary Sentinel. “We were lucky to have had him in our community.”

“He was just your ideal player,” said Border Bruins coach and general manager Nick Deschenes during a phone interview with The Boundary Sentinel on Monday night. “His death is really tragic. He was an outstanding young man.”

Deschenes said Dunsmuir had a great work ethic and was always willing to contribute to the local Minor Hockey program. He descibed him as “professional” in his career and “studious”. 

When Deschenes heard the news on Friday he immediately reached out to the team via text message.

“A lot of them were shocked. It was really difficult to know how to handle this. We’d met his mother and father and it is hard to find closure in this.”

Deschenes said the team may send Dunsmuir’s jersey to his one surviving brother, David, who was at Brock University at the time of the tragedy.

“We want to send his jersey to his brother and let him know he left a mark on Grand Forks,” said Deschenes. 

According to the Border Bruin’s official statement, “Robbie was a talented goalie, but above all a kind and generous person and an outstanding young man. His dedication to hard work and constant improvement of himself and all around him, along with his contagious optimism, made him a great positive leader. Robbie was an exemplary member of the community, donating his time to minor hockey and volunteering for numerous outreach programs. Everyone who got to know him was touched by his honesty, gentle spirit and sense of humor.”

When York Regional Police arrived at the home on Friday, the family was found together in a front room on the second floor of their home, according to a CBC report. The entire community is mourning the loss by flying flags at half-mast and holding vigils.


In a tragic fire that took three of his family in Gwillimbury, Ontario, past Border Bruin goalie Robert Dunsmuir is dead.

According to the CBC story, the fire Kevin, 55, Jennifer, 51, Robert, 19 and Cameron Dunsmuir, 16 all died inside their home in East Gwillimbury, Ont., about 50 kilometres north of Toronto early Friday.

Another son, David, 24, is the only remaining member of the immediate family. He was away at Brock University.

York Regional Police said that at 5:30 a.m. ET Friday they received a 911 call and were dispatched to the home on 72 Howard St.

Fire officials confirm there was a smoke alarm on the second floor and in the basement, added the CBC story.

We will keep you up to date as the story unfolds.

Categories: GeneralSports