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Monica Distefano '14
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- Men's Hockey Partners with Team IMPACT to Recruit Seven-Year Old Aidan Collins
Men's Hockey Partners with Team IMPACT to Recruit Seven-Year Old Aidan Collins
April 7, 2014
On Sunday, March 31, the Curry College Men's Hockey team partnered with Team IMPACT to recruit its newest player - seven-year old Aidan Collins from Randolph, Mass. In December 2010 at the age of three, Aidan was diagnosed with Wilms' Tumor, a form of pediatric kidney cancer. Following this diagnosis, Aidan underwent surgery to remove one of his kidneys, and then had 14 rounds of radiation treatment and eight months of chemotherapy before he was considered to be in remission.
Since finishing treatment, Aidan has returned to school and is now in the first grade. During his special "Draft Day" at Ulin Rink Aidan was welcomed into the Curry Hockey family. Aidan's day with the team began with a zamboni ride around the ice. Following that, Head Coach T.J. Manastersky presented Aidan with his own jersey and stall in the team's locker room. Once Aidan laced up his skates, he hit the ice with members of the Curry Hockey team, along with friends and family who came to celebrate with Aidan.
"To be able to bring Aidan in here and see his strength and his courage it's definitely touching and I think it's a wonderful thing," said Manastersky. "We're very fortunate to be here at Curry College, to have the opportunity to compete, to play hockey, and do what we love, and be passionate about it. So we're in a position where we can give back, and I think that's important."
Aidan is the sixth child to join a Curry team with help from Team Impact. Aidan joins Sean Bennett (Men's Ice Hockey), Gavin McCarthy (Baseball), Rachel Wojcik (Women's Lacrosse), Shane Heffernan (Football), and Lauren Dunn (Softball).
"These new members of our hockey, football, baseball, women's lacrosse and softball teams are and always will be our number one recruits," said Colonels' Athletic Director Vinnie Eruzione. "The strength, determination, and sacrifices they show every day are truly inspirational and they serve as role models for our student-athletes."
Team IMPACT is a 501(c)3 non-profit chartered to improve the quality of life for children facing life-threatening and chronic illness through the power of a team. Team IMPACT children are drafted onto local college athletic teams and to the greatest extent possible, become an official team member for the duration of the relationship through to graduation. Founded in April 2011, Team Impact has now matched more than 450 courageous kids with teams throughout more than half of the country
Curry College was introduced to Team IMPACT in January 2012 when the Men's Hockey Team drafted 12-year-old Bennett onto their roster. Eruzione has since spearheaded the effort on campus, and since January 2012, the baseball, football, women's lacrosse, and softball teams have all drafted a child onto their roster.
"As our organization continues to grow," said Team IMPACT's Director of Programs Maura Mahoney, "we hope to expand the concept to every team on campus, allowing every student-athlete to benefit from the Team IMPACT program."
"These young men and women from Team IMPACT have made all of our student-athletes and teams stronger just by their presence," Eruzione added. "They have made the Curry student-athlete understand what is really important in life, and that to be able to give back even a little makes us all feel that much better at the end of the day."