SD 60 students shred with Olympic skateboarder

Not many people can say they skateboarded with an Olympian, but a few local middle school students can now say they have. 

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A man in a blue and orange hoodie, giving a thumbs up towards the camera.
Professional skateboarder, Ryan Decenzo at the Pomeroy Sports Centre (Katherine Caddel,

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Not many people can say they skateboarded with an Olympian, except for a few Fort St. John middle school students.

On Friday, some students from Dr. Kearney and Bert Bowes got the chance to skate with Ryan Decenzo, a skateboarder who competed for Team Canada in the 2020 Summer Olympics. Students involved also received Red Dragon skateboards, sponsored by Norvac Services, that they later got signed by Decenzo. 

Some of the ramps and rails they used had been made on Thursday by students from Dr. Kearney and Youtuber Ben Degros. The ramps made by the students will stay at the Pomeroy for drop-in skate nights, while the rails will be donated to Dr. Kearney. 

In his first trip to Fort St. John, Decenzo said he wanted to give the students a chance to get to see and skate with someone who had made a living skateboarding. 

“I think it’s encouraging for the kids to see that person in the flesh instead of just on videos on YouTube and Instagram and whatever,” Decenzo said. 

Ryan Decenzo with SD 60 students (Katherine Caddel,

Decenzo also said it was a way to help grow skateboarding in the community and Canada as a whole. 

“We skate with the kids, give a few lessons to the ones that are starting out, and kind of give them hope to get into skating. Trying to grow skateboarding in Canada, obviously,” Decenzo said.

“And who knows, maybe one of these kids could be a future Olympian for Team Canada, and they could win the Olympics for Team Canada and skateboarding.” 

Decenzo said he met an “awesome” community when he began skateboarding and wants to see that positivity impact other kids in places like Fort St. John. 

“Skateboarding’s just one of those things. It’s cool, so the kids feel cool when they’re doing it, and it’s fun. You can learn, you can scare yourself, you can get adrenaline, you can laugh when your friend falls, or it teaches you a lot of life lessons. I just think that that’s the best thing about it.” 

The event was initially announced back in January. Organizer Cole Andrews said he thought bringing Decenzo in would be good as he thought the students would be better able to connect with a Canadian skater. 

There will be a public demonstration and meeting opportunity for others from the community on Friday evening from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

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