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Charity golf tournament to support men's mental health

'Swingin’ For Sherbs' to honour memory of local hockey coach

Kyle Sherbaty was known and loved by many in both Cloverdale and the wider hockey community.

Now his friends and family are hosting a charity golf tourney next month in an effort to honour his memory.

The inaugural Kyle Sherbaty Memorial Golf Tournament will be held July 20.

Nicknamed “Swingin’ For Sherbs,” the tourney will serve a twofold purpose, said Craig Sherbaty, Kyle's dad. The focus will be to celebrate Kyle’s life and to support men’s mental health initiatives.

Kyle, affectionately known as “Sherbs,” passed away last fall at the age of 33. At the time, a GoFundMe was set up to help support the family he left behind.

“Kyle had a big impact on the community,” said Craig, who is the director of hockey operations for the Cloverdale Minor Hockey Association. “He helped multiple, multiple hockey players and families enjoy the game of hockey throughout their careers.”

He said they also want to celebrate Kyle's family and the passion he had for playing sports.

“We also want to use this event to bring awareness to the issue of men’s mental health,” Craig added.

All funds raised through donations and tournament entry fees will be donated to men’s mental health causes.

“We have a couple of groups we are working with,” added Craig. “We are working with HeadsUpGuys. And Buddy Check for Jesse is the other one. We really want to support the mental health side of men and children.”

Craig said the two organizations are doing great work with both kids and adults in need of help when it comes to mental health.

Craig told the Cloverdale Reporter he knows more about mental health now than he ever did before. He had no idea about the struggles many young men and kids are facing. He said the hardest part is coming to terms with the fact that if you don’t know about the struggles of mental health, and what many are facing, then you can never know what help a person may need.

“Knowing these resources are there, and bringing awareness to these resources, is a highlight for the [golf] event.”

He said mental health is not always on people’s radar. When it comes to men, and especially young men, he noted, there’s a misconception of weakness surrounding the issue and that can prevent men from seeking help. Men usually don't want to reach out and ask for help when they need it the most.

“One of the reasons why is that they think they’ve failed,” Craig explained.

He hopes the golf tourney can help highlight these resources and bring positive change to those dealing with these issues.

HeadsUpGuys is totally anonymous,” he added. “One of the things they try to do is make it so you are helping the people around you. What they don’t know is that they are actually helping themselves at the same time. It’s a really good program.”

Craig said the issue of men's mental health is something that isn't talked about enough. He added the value of "check-ins" is, perhaps, the most important thing for people to know.

“Don’t ignore it when people are not feeling well,” he said. “When you know somebody’s not well, you need to go and help them. You need to call them. You need to actually go see them. Just being with them will support, and sometimes help, them get through those darkest times.”

He added the Cloverdale community, as big as it’s starting to become, is still small and tight-knit. He feels that if the tournament can help get the message out, then lives can be saved.

“You never know when just that phone call, or just being with that person for one hour could save a life. You just don’t know.”

Craig said the idea to host a memorial golf tournament was initially the idea of one of Sherbs’ friends, Adam DeSautels. Now two more have come on board to help organize it too: Matt Malenstyn and Colten Hayes.

“There’s a group of Kyle’s friends that have spearheaded this,” he added. “They want to bring awareness to these men's mental health issues. And, just in general, how people are feeling in this area.”

The planning and organizing for the tournament has been bittersweet for Craig. It’s only been a little over eight months since Kyle died.

“It’s still a challenge,” he said. “Kyle ... Kyle ... Kyle took his life in October, and we’re talking about a tournament in his memory. It’s still very, very, difficult to process for us as a family. But we are are very proud that Kyle’s friends have the love for him to help with this type of event to celebrate him and help with some of the things Sandra and I are trying to get across.”

He noted he and his wife Sandra have really embraced the fact that they want to do as much as they can to support those in need in the local community.

“We want to help as much as we can to help families to recognize what to look for.”

Craig said through Pacific Titans Hockey, his hockey development company, he’s always focused on a hockey player’s mindset, their ability to focus on growth, and how they're feeling and playing. He said now, it’s been a real challenge to be humble enough to say, “If this can happen to us, it can happen to anybody.”

He said part of that is recognizing there is no “perfect look” that a person has or emanates to figure out when someone is struggling with mental health issues.

“That's the challenge. This affects every single demographic, every single culture, every single race. It doesn't matter who,” he added. “But if we can bring awareness to help support families to know the signs, and for the people that are in these situations, that there is help for them, then that is what Sandra and I would like. We would really like to get that out there.”

Craig said they've had really great support from local businesses in Cloverdale and Langley, including The Hockey Shop and Cyclone Taylor Sports. As such, many items have been donated for a silent auction to help raise funds. Once live, which should be sometime near the middle of July, people can visit the tournament page on to view and bid on the auction items.

The golf tournament will be held at Swaneset Bay Resort and Country Club in Pitt Meadows July 20. Cost per person is $230 with all proceeds going to support men’s mental health initiatives.

“Swingin’ For Sherbs” is also looking for sponsors to help contribute even more money to mental health programs and services for men.

For more info, or to sign up for the golf, or to sign on as a sponsor, visit and click on “Kyle Sherbaty Memorial Golf Tournament.”

Malin Jordan

About the Author: Malin Jordan

Malin is the editor of the Cloverdale Reporter.
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