Ed Doerksen a 37 year-old Barrie resident competed at the Masters level for the Barrie Trojans Swim Club. At the Canadian Masters Swimming championships in May, 1987, Doerksen finished 12th in the 50 metres butterfly (36.00 seconds), 21st in the 50 freestyle (32.54) and 15th in the 100 breaststroke (1:34.26). Later that same month at the Burlington Masters Swim Invitational, Doerksen won the 200 individual medley, and placed third in the 100 butterfly. All of the above is made more remarkable by the fact that Ed Doerksen also competed as a disabled athlete in the A4 class (for athletes with one leg amputated below the knee). At the Ontario Games for the Physically Disabled in July, Ed won two gold medals (in the 200 freestyle, 100 breaststroke and 400 freestyle, setting a Games record of 5:48 in the latter event) and two silvers (in the 200 individual medley and 100 freestyle). That performance earned him a spot on the Canadian National Team for the International Games for the Disabled, which took place in August in Nashville, Tennessee. Doerksen’s 1987 season culminated with a sensational performance at the Canadian Foresters Games for the Physically Disabled in late August. He started with a silver medal in the 100 metres breaststroke, and then followed that with a pair of gold medal performances. He established a new Canadian record in the 400 freestyle (6:4.31) for athletes of his class, then shattered the Canadian and World records for the 200 freestyle.
Other Nominees for the 1987 Athlete of the year were:
Darren Rumble: A 19 year-old Barrie native Rumble is a product of the Barrie Minor Hockey Association and a former member of the Barrie Colts. Rumble was a defenseman with the Kitchener Rangers of the Ontario Hockey League. In his rookie season, he scored 11 goals and 32 assists for 43 points in 64 games. In the annual season-ending poll of OHL coaches, Rumble was voted the best stick handler in the Emms Division. (ahead of all forwards). He was also selected the best offensive defenseman in the entire league. In the National Hockey League entry draft in June, Rumble was selected in the first round (20th overall) by the Philadelphia Flyers.
Bob Kennedy A Barrie Central Collegiate high school student who excelled in both Football and Track. In 1987, Kennedy average better than two touchdowns per game for the senior Redskins,. Central rolled through an undefeated season en route to the Georgian Bay Championship, outscoring their opponents by an average of 44-4. A provincially ranked sprinter, Kennedy had victories in the 100 & 200 metres at the Simcoe County Southern Zone Meet. He also anchored Central’s winning 4×100 metres relay team. He later repeated his 100 & 200 metres triumphs at the Georgian Bay Championships. He was 5th in the 100 metres and 4th over 200 metres at the OFSAA Central Regional Meet, and followed that up with a 3rd in his heat, and a 6th in the final, of the 200 metres at the Ontario Championships.