After 34 Years, Bo Hickey To Retire As Lakeview Cemetery Superintendent

Bo Hickey has connected with generations of locals through the different hats he’s worn in New Canaan, perhaps most visibly as a coach in the high school football program and of the varsity hockey team—seeing many of the town’s best athletes achieve excellence in some of their most memorable, dramatic moments. Yet for many local families, Hickey may have played his most important role during their most difficult times, in his work since August of 1981 as superintendent of the pond-dotted, green and rolling Lakeview Cemetery. “My job is to make sure, first of all, that the grounds are in decent order, selling property, interring people, and just the upkeep of the cemetery itself,” Hickey said Monday afternoon from the small office at 352 Main St., just over the wooden bridge that spans the Fivemile River inside the cemetery’s gates. “There is 40 acres here. So it’s a large piece of property.”

And a large responsibility.

Wilky Gilmore: ‘He Was One of Our Own’

In among the trophies in the lobby of the New Canaan High School Athletic Complex hangs a framed, vintage number-12 Rams jersey. There is no plaque, no marker, no inscription identifying whose jersey it was. As a result, hundreds of students, parents and fans filter past the jersey every day, unaware of the history or the significance behind it, unaware of Maurice ‘Wilky’ Gilmore. Yet for legions of New Canaanites, especially friends and relatives who were lucky enough to know him personally, Gilmore—selfless, charismatic, intelligent and graceful—etched a singular legacy here in town. That he did so in an era marked by civil unrest makes his accomplishments perhaps that much more impressive—though those close to Gilmore say his rare gifts of compassion and decency saw him transcend matters such as race and, in more than one way, “raise the game” of everyone around him.

VIDEO: Thank-You to Bo Hickey, Retiring NCHS Ice Hockey Coach

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New Canaan “Old Timer” Len Paglialunga, a Rams football star in his own right back in the ‘60s, first heard the name Bo Hickey as a teenager. Hickey, a standout Stamford Catholic High School running back, went on to Maryland, the CFL and a single (and outstanding, four TDs) season with the Denver Broncos before injuries sidelined him. He returned to this area and joined the New Canaan High School football coaching staff under Lou Marinelli, and then 20 years ago, took over as head coach of the varsity ice hockey team—a program he lifted to a never-before seen, consistently high-achieving level. On Monday night, Hickey announced that he’s retiring from the position—a fact first reported by Dave Stewart of the New Canaan Advertiser. The news triggered expressions of respect and fond memories from Paglialunga, like so many involved in New Canaan sports.

Third Time Not the Charm: New Canaan Falls to Notre Dame–West Haven


There’s an old cliché in sports about how tough it is to beat a team three times in one season. That said, cliché became reality for the New Canaan Rams boys hockey team. The 7th-seeded Rams could not pull off the season hat trick over Notre Dame–West Haven as they dropped a 2-0 decision to the #2 Green Knights Saturday afternoon at Webster Bank Arena. The loss eliminated New Canaan from the state tourney, ending their season. “Today the better team won, very simple thing,” New Canaan head coach Bo Hickey said after the game.

Wave Goodbye: New Canaan Stuns Darien To Win FCIAC Hockey Title


The last time the New Canaan and Darien boys hockey teams met in the FCIAC Championship game it was 2008. Back then, Mac Wright was a 6th grade youth hockey player, awestruck by the spectacle of a filled-to-the-rafters hockey rink watching two bitter rivals going at each other with everything they had, as though their lives depended on it. And although he saw the Rams lose to Darien 2-1, it made an immediate, lasting impression on the young goalie. “I was thinking to myself, ‘I want to play in that game,’ ” Wright recalled. “This is something I need to do in my life.’”

Six years later, Wright not only played in “that game”—he’s its MVP.