Sled Hockey: Bringing Two Brothers Back on the Ice Despite the Odds
HOPE Inc is allowing paralympians in the Valley to compete with other cities
FARGO, N.D. — An organization is giving hope to disabled people who want to get back on the ice.
The Fargo-Moorhead Sled Hockey team is getting ready to leave for San Jose to play in the nationals.
“It’s a very exciting time for our players,” said HOPE Inc Executive Director Adair Grommesh. “Especially for our adults, because many of them played stand-up hockey and they’ve got spinal cord injuries. They’ve been sitting around waiting for sled hockey to open up for them for the past 10 to 11 years.”
“I got hurt in 2007 and I was put in a wheelchair,” said sled hockey player Aaron Johnson. “I played all the way through high school so I had a good couple years under my belt.”
Aaron Johnson became paralyzed after an accident at work.
This left him unable to play hockey, a sport he and his brother Caleb played together while growing up.
Then HOPE Inc. put together the Fargo-Moorhead sled hockey team.
When Aaron joined the team, his brother, who is able-bodied, decided to join him.
“It’s everything, it means the world to me,” said Caleb. “We grew up playing hockey. This is kind of like a dream come true.”
“Out there right now, it’s just a bunch of people living their dreams again and being whole again,” said Grommesh.
“It’s still hockey,” explained Aaron Johnson. “You just do it a little bit different.”
HOPE Inc. put together a junior and adult sled hockey team with players from all across the Red River Valley.
Both teams start nationals next Thursday.