Rev. MSGR. J. Alpheri Lauziere
Monsignor Lauziere arrived in Berlin in 1922, when the young sport of hockey was
growing rapidly, as the local mill had just formed a mill league and Berlin High
School finished its first year competing in the sport. Msgr. Lauziere organized a
city league whereby the mill teams, the High School, and various local clubs would
play each other with playoffs held at the end of the season. His team, The
Canadiens, won two city titles in four years.
Beginning in 1930, the depression was taking its toll on local hockey. Msgr.
Lauziere persuaded several of the teams to merge, forming the Berlin Hockey
Club, which became the Berlin Maroons in January 1937. Under his leadership
and Hall of Famer “Navy” Labnon, the Maroons became a powerhouse and won
the New England AAU championship in 1941.
After WWII, the Maroons resumed play in 1946/47. Described in newspaper
accounts as having a “cool business head,” Lauziere financed the club year after
year finding innovative ways to raise money to keep the club afloat. Under his
guidance and quiet support, the Berlin Maroons won 7 New England and three
national Senior AHA Championships. In 1949, Msgr. Lauziere and fellow priest Fr.
Omer Bousquet were cited by the Amateur Hockey Assoc. for their outstanding
contributions to hockey.
In 1966, as the treasurer of the Notre Dame Arena, Inc., he convinced the arena
board to install artificial ice. He set aside $25,000 and had faith that the
community would raise the balance. In 1969, the arena roof collapsed. He was
one of those who spearheaded the arena rebuild which was completed in one
year. His title “Patron Saint of Hockey” in the North Country was well earned.