This past weekend, Canadians gathered to celebrate the 2018 inductees of Canada’s Walk of Fame. Included among this year’s honourees was Colonel Chris Hadfield and dynamic skating duo Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir.
Colonel Hadfield, of course, became a household name as the first Canadian Commander of the International Space Station. Referred to as “the most famous astronaut since Neil Armstrong,” Colonel Hadfield is a worldwide sensation whose video of David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” has been seen by over 75 million people online, and was called “possibly the most poignant version of the song ever created” by Bowie himself.
Since returning to earth, he has continued to make outer space accessible to millions and infuse a sense of wonder in our collective consciousness about the marvels of science and space travel.
In a CBC News article, he shared why he considers this to be a great honour:
Hadfield, who retired in 2013, said he is grateful to receive a Walk of Fame star, especially when a new chapter of space exploration will begin on Monday. That’s when Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques is set to be launched to the International Space Station on a six-month mission.
“I recognize that life goes in stages and people get their turn. And when you have the oars, you should be pulling as hard as you can, but then you get to a certain stage and you realize you should hand those oars off to somebody else,” said Hadfield.
“I am very much looking forward to seeing (Saint-Jacques) successfully leave Earth and start his grand adventure off the planet.”
Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir are the most decorated figure skaters in Olympic history, having won three gold medals and five Olympic medals in total, and are celebrated for their iconic 21-year partnership.
On the red carpet of the event, they said:
“I can’t believe this is real life. This is such a huge honour,” said [Scott] Moir. “We can’t believe we have a Walk of Fame star, and we’re pretty excited about it.”
[Tessa] Virtue said she hopes her and Moir’s 21-year partnership on the ice has inspired a new generation of Canadian athletes.
“The thing with the Olympic movement and sport, in general, is that there’s always another story, another athlete coming that is even more inspiring and is giving more to the Canadian public,” said Virtue. “We’re so lucky to be a part of something bigger.”
This year’s inductees also included singer-songwriter Andy Kim, billionaire businessman Jimmy Pattison, actress Andrea Martin, and a posthumous honour for singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen.