The man accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars of Walter Gretzky’s memorabilia has had deep ties to some of the greatest hockey legends, including Bobby Orr, Doug Gilmour and the Gretzky family, TheHockeyNews.com has learned. In fact, in an incredible twist of irony, the accused man would be inducted into the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame in Parry Sound, Ont., The same Hall of Fame that Walter Gretzky was inducted into two years ago.
Brantford police confirmed that Ken Hadall, a 58-year-old from Oakville, Ont., Was charged with theft of more than $ 5,000 and possession of more than $ 5,000 in connection with the theft of $ 500,000 (in US funds, which is approximately $ 640,000 in Canadian funds) is worth of memorabilia from Gretzky’s house. They also confirmed that 58-year-old June Dobson, a senior Ontario provincial police officer in Grenville County, Ontario, has been charged with more than $ 5,000 fraud and breach of trust in connection with a stick from Wayne Gretzky’s childhood that was sold to a memorabilia dealer for $ 6,000.
Police said the two cases were unrelated and that the investigation that led to Dobson’s arrest actually stemmed from the Hadall investigation. Both people were well known to the Gretzky family. Dobson has been a friend of Walter’s for many years and it is believed that Hadall’s relationship dates back to Keith Gretzky’s playing career in junior hockey in the mid-1980s. It should be noted that none of the defendants has been convicted of the crimes and is considered innocent until proven guilty.
But it is clear that the theft from Gretzky’s house was not a case of burglary and was indeed an inside job, offering yet another cautionary tale to NHL players and their families about who they associate with.
Hadall first met Gilmour early in his tenure with the Toronto Maple Leafs and the two have worked together on a number of projects, but a person close to the situation said Gilmour cut ties with Hadall last spring. It is also clear that Hadall had a very close relationship with Orr, as evidenced by his induction into the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame. The launch was scheduled to take place on June 13, but was postponed due to COVID. TheHockeyNews.com contacted the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame and was told by a spokesperson that it had recently heard the news about Hadall and would not comment.
The website for the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame says the selection committee’s mandate is to “select worthy candidates for the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame and two recognize the significant contribution and exceptional achievement in the field of athletics and sports”.
When it announced the introduction of Hadall as an honorary member in February, the Hall of Fame outlined his contributions as follows:
Ken Hadall has been a devoted and disinterested friend and supporter of the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame for over a decade. Ken’s support has come in various forms over the years. His contributions to the annual Celebrity Golf Classic fundraiser are legendary and include awards, gift bags, custom hockey sticks signed by hockey kings, and partnerships with his extensive network to secure an ever-growing list of celebrities to pair with golf teams. Ken was instrumental in closing a deal with Samsung Canada that donated technology for the Hall of Fame displays, in addition to making a significant financial contribution to the Hall of Fame’s reserve funds. Ken loved the community of Parry Sound and the pride of the local youth, which led him and Doug Gilmour to approach the Hall of Fame with a donation to establish a Bobby Orr Hall of Fame Scholarship for local youth in 2018. support, Ken is incredibly generous with his time. His most commonly used phrase is said to be, “How can I help?” The Bobby Orr Hall of Fame has benefited immensely from Ken’s generous support and dedication and the Hall is proud to welcome him as an honorary member. “