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RIP Chris Abbott and Buddy The Puffin

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Buddy The Puffin in Icecaps jersey at Mile One Stadium in St John's, Newfoundland.
Buddy The Puffin in Icecaps jersey at Mile One Stadium in St John’s, Newfoundland.

ST JOHN’S, Newfoundland – The Newfoundland sports community is mourning the death of Chris Abbot today at age 51. You may know him as his alter ego, Buddy The Puffin, the 7 foot tall long time sports mascot in St John’s.

Chris Abbott aka Buddy The Puffin
Chris Abbott aka Buddy The Puffin

Abbott had a unique, endearing and enduring way of entertaining the fans at sports and community events.
We first saw Buddy in 1992 as part of the new St. John’s Maple Leafs American Hockey League franchise that had set up shop in St John’s at the old Memorial Stadium. He created the identity that captured the hearts of the community.

Buddy outlived the Maple Leafs … and The Edge, Fog Devils and Ice Caps and was currently wearing a Newfoundland Growers uniform but he became a local celebrity in his own right and an institution in the sports and charitable community. He made frequent appearances at the Janeway Children’s hospital, charity events, the St John’s Santa Clause Parade and schools with Buddy’s Book Club. A lot of people in St John’s grew up with Buddy The Puffin.
All who met Abbott left feeling better. His love for life a positivity was infectious.
Glen Stanford, COO of the Newfoundland Growlers said Abbott connected not only with children but made adults feel like a kid again.
“Abbott had the ability to ignite child-like wonder”, said Stanford. “He says Abbott had a special connection with the community that he worked hard to forge.”
  Premier Andrew Fury said there was no bigger star at a hockey or basketball game than Buddy the Puffin. I am saddened to hear of the passing of Chris “Abbo” Abbott. He was a tremendous gift to our community.

 

 

Paws and Claws manicure for Buddy The Puffin. Photo by Debby lake.
Buddy The Puffin on kid duty. Photo by Debby Lake.
Buddy The Puffin on kid duty. Photo by Debby Lake.
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