It became the end of an era on July 10, 2014 when Darcy Rota officially resigned his position as President of the Coquitlam Express.
He sold his ownership shares of the Express organization a year ago but decided to stay on board for this past season. He goes out on top watching the Express win their second BCHL championship. The Express are tied with the Penticton Vees, Nanaimo Clippers and Surrey Eagles for second most BCHL championships won with two since the Express came in the BCHL in 2001. Only the Vernon Vipers won more with four.
Rota's resignation ends a run that saw the former Vancouver Canuck star cut all ties with a hockey team he helped build literally from nothing in 2000 and hit the ice in the fall of 2001 as an expansion team.
Over the course of the next 14 seasons, Rota was the most recognizable face of the Express franchise whether it was based in Coquitlam or Burnaby.
There were ups and downs along the road for Rota and the Express. They were highlighted by the two BCHL championships (2006, 2014) and 1 RBC Cup national championship (2006).
Plus there were plenty of other memories created at the rink and in the office as the Express went through their growth and evoloution.
I had a chance to speak with Darcy about his decision to leave the Express. And to reflect on his time with the franchise.