Burlington can indeed be very proud of this young woman’s story.
Melanie Booth was born and raised in Burlington – more specifically – in Aldershot.
Melanie is a member of the Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame.
Her rise to Olympic status and medallist had its foundation as a member of the Burlington Youth Soccer Clubs Program. Melanie was blessed to be tutored by some exceptional BYSC coaches as a youngster who recognized that she was an exceptional athlete demonstrating determination and focus far beyond her years. Melanie is an outstanding soccer player and equally outstanding human being. Among Melanie’s many fine qualities is her commitment and loyalty to Burlington and to BYSC. She remained loyal to her club team – the Burlington Flames – throughout her formative soccer youth. At 15 the skilled teen was selected to the Ontario provincial team. Her savvy on the pitch immediately attracted the attention of Soccer Canada’s National Team program. At 17 Melanie was living “the dream.” The former BYSC standout suited up in the Canadian kit representing Canada at the 2002 FIFA U-19 World Championship hosted in Edmonton. More than 47 000 packed the stadium to witness the inaugural U-19 Womens World Cup. In sudden-death overtime in the gold medal game, Canada fell to the U.S. 1-0. To date this is the only FIFA youth age group medal that Canada has captured. The Aldershot High School grad was heavily recruited by a number of NCAA D1 universities. Melanie selected the University of Florida in Gainesville specifically because of coach Becky Burleigh and the team’s ‘team first’ philosophy. Melanie received All-American accolades during 3 of her year competing, and along with her Gator mates qualified all four years for the NCAA D1 tournament; twice qualifying for the sweet 16 round. In 2007 Melanie was selected to represent Canada at the Pan American Games in Rio de Janiero where Canada defeated Mexico 2-1 scoring a bronze medal. Four years later in Guadalajara Mexico, Canada was tied 1-1 with Brazil in the gold medal game after regulation and extra time. In the shootout Melanie scored one of the goals to help Canada defeat Brazil 4-3 winning Canada’s first ever Pan American soccer gold medal. In the four year interim between Pan Am Games Melanie’s international experience included the 2008 FIFA Women’s World Cup in China and the 2008 CONCACAF Olympic qualifier in Cuidad Juarez, Mexico. In 2012 Melanie’s Olympic dream became reality. In extra time in the bronze medal game, Canada defeated France 1-0 - for the first ever medal won by a Canadian women’s team at the summer Olympic Games. The medal presentation in front of more than 80 000 fans at London’s venerable Wembley Stadium was the penultimate for the little girl from Aldershot who always dreamed big. Melanie has endured many setbacks and injuries over her decorated career. A broken ankle in 1998; a broken wrist in 2002; a torn ACL in 2008; numerous sprains and strains; an inner ear infection which seriously impacted her balance and perception - but throughout all the challenges – she never gave up. Melanie Booth indeed represents all things good about sport. We are proud to welcome Melanie Booth into the 2017 Burlington Sports Hall of Fame.