Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Former Teammates at B.C. School 'Flabbergasted' of Reports Man Joined Terrorists

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Former Teammates at B.C. School 'Flabbergasted' of Reports Man Joined Terrorists

Article excerpt

B.C. connection for Calgary man accused of terrorism


KAMLOOPS, B.C. - One of two brothers from Calgary who reportedly travelled overseas to join a terrorist group in Syria was a quiet but social young man who didn't talk about religion during a short time playing volleyball at a British Columbia university, say people who knew him at the time.

CBC News reported last week that Collin and Gregory Gordon, two brothers who most recently lived in Calgary, had travelled to Syria to join the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL.

Collin Gordon, who grew up in Calgary and played volleyball for the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology, joined the WolfPack men's volleyball team at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops, B.C., in 2008. He dropped out of school the following year.

In a university media package prepared for the 2008-2009 WolfPack season, Gordon is described as an average volleyball player who had good ball control and an excellent vertical jump.

Gordon is quoted in the media package as saying his biggest role model was swimmer Michael Phelps, who he described as "the example of perfection." He said his long-term goals included operating a small business.

Spencer Reed, who was in his first year on the team that season, said Gordon was a "mellow dude" who was known for throwing parties.

"He just sort of went about his own business," Reed told Kamloops This Week.

"He was quite well known in the campus community, I think. He was involved in a lot of little projects, quite social, just sort of did things he was interested in."

Reed said he was stunned when he saw a photo of Gordon accompanying the CBC story about the brothers. Reed sent text messages to other former teammates, all of whom were "flabbergasted," he said.

Reed said he and Gordon got along, but they weren't especially close. He never knew Gordon to speak about religion. …

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