Faces of the River Valley Vanguard – Re-Visited

The week of March 19th, 2019 on Win Column Sports Network (WCSN) I ran a trio of stories spotlighting different faces of the River Valley Vanguard (RVV). The RVV is the collective name of the FC Edmonton Supporters Group. The owner of WCSN recently took down the website and started up his own YouTube page. Before the take down, I saved a few of my favourite pieces.

For brevity sake, I’m merging three articles and 12 faces down to one article and the 6 faces I’m most recently interacted with. From my personal experiences, any and all faces of the RVV are easy to speak with and willing to explain the Supporters Culture to any newer fans checking out an Eddies game at Clarke Stadium.

Nathan Terlesky
Died in the wool FCEd supporter. Love Lego, scotch, and cigars. Work in a school, so summers are nice and quiet. Co-host of Loyal Company of the River Valley podcast.
Gordon Walker

 

I’m Gord. Moved to YEG in 74. Went to Drillers matches when young. I love footy and trace my roots back to Manchester. Glory Glory Man United. I love the Eddies and will usually be found banging a drum in the Supporters section.
Dallas Walker

 

My name is Dallas, and I’ve been following the Eddies since 2011. Watched the first season while I was living in C*lgary. Moved back to Edmonton in late 2011 and joined the ESG in 2012 after joining their message forum in 2011. Since then I’ve been a season ticket holder and only missed 3 matches. I have been heavily involved with ESG. Going to all the events outside of matches, hosting away matches, tifo/banner painting etc… and usually the one leading all the chants till me voice either gives up or I drank myself stupid.
I’m really looking forward to starting this new chapter with everyone. Starting new with a fresh new and positive attitude. Let’s show the rest of Canada how it’s done!!!
HERE is a link to Dallas detailing the origins of the Al Classico (Edmonton vs Calgary) rivalry name.
Dave Cholewa
I’m the first born of Polish immigrants, and so soccer was always a given as being a fan of, however, the lack of regular tv coverage made it pretty inaccessible for a while. I fondly remember watching tape delays of Poland’s World Cup games back in 2002 in my elementary school. Closer to home, I remember going to the Mini World Cup tournaments in town with my father and brother, and we would be decked out in Polish gear (we’re talking full kit, scarves, even red and white wigs), and we would go out and cheer on the local Polish guys. That was my first exposure to actual supporters culture.
My first taste of FCE was on June 9th, 2013. I was out at The Pint on Whyte with a friend of mine to celebrate my birthday, and in the back room, in a corner by a TV, there were these two dudes (and still current RVV members), just sitting, singing and yelling at the telly, with their FCE and ESG scarves. I went over and asked who they were, what they were watching, and how I could join in the craziness. From there on out, I attended as many games as I could with the ESG. I was still a uni student at the time, so I didn’t get my first season ticket until the 2017 season. In that time tho, I was involved in the ESG finances and organization. I even went as far as traveling to San Francisco to watch an away game.
When it was announced that FCE were seizing operations in November 2017, I was crushed, because FCE was a huge part of my identity. I instantly jumped on board with the group that wanted to bring it back, and was pretty involved in the movement. Luck would have it that because I’m obsessive, I ended up buying the very first membership and season ticket, and was presented with the very first FCE 2.0 scarf on that launch on June 8th, 2018. Flights and accommodations are booked to Winnipeg for the very first game.
Graham Pretty
I am a huge supporter of Edmonton sports including being a season ticket holder to both the indoor Drillers and the short-lived Aviators. When FC Edmonton came around I just had to be there too. After the first season I realized we had a supporters group that wanted to bring the European atmosphere to Canada; I could not resist. After the entire NASL era, the uncertainty of the year after, and then finally the announcement of “The Return;” my fandom has never wavered. As long as the Eddies are around I will be there chanting and jumping and drinking, the way the support should be.
Adam Z
I’m Adam. I moved to Edmonton from Medicine Hat in 2008 and never left. I always loved soccer and went to my first game in 2012, and bit the bullet and bought season tickets in 2013. My other side is Schalke 04 so having colours in common is convenient. Fun fact about me: I’m fluent in French too.

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