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  • Richie Doherty

Thanks to all the Hockey Moms out there.

Updated: May 14, 2019

Where would any hockey player be without their hockey mom? They would probably be on time to practice, that is where they’d be.

All jokes aside without our Moms every hockey player would be lost. Moms are our loudest, most supportive fans. In the coldest rinks they wrap themselves in blankets and bring an intensity that can only be matched by the hardo assistant coach who works the offense bench door. Tim Hortons in hand, they are always excited to greet you after games. Even though we stink, they give us a big hug and kiss us on the cheek. They organize parties and team events during tournaments and wash all our smelly gear. The most important thing they do is provide support. They pick you up when you are down, they force you to act respectfully when you are up. Without our Moms every hockey player would be lost.

I am very lucky to have a great Mom in my life, she has been incredibly supportive and loving during my hockey career. She is intense but caring. She understands and expects me to win, but wants it done respectfully because she has empathy for the other team. She doesn't always love what I do during games, but she wants me to play hard and mean. I love her for that and always try to make her proud, so I can see a smile when I come to the lobby after games. One of the happiest moments of my life was hugging her after winning the USPHL Championship. I was so happy she was there to experience it. That trophy was as much hers as it was mine; we won it together.

I haven't just had a great Mom during my hockey career, but I have had great Billet Moms too. Billeting for those who don't know is where an out of state hockey players lives with a host family they didn't previously know. If you are lucky, like I have been, you make great relationships with these families. These Moms treat you like one of their own. I can truly say I love my billet families and I know they care about me. I had a situation with a billet family where I only lived with them for a month. The Mom was so caring and generous. She was very much like my own Mom. She and I would talk for hours about hockey, her life, her kids, and sadly her illness. We talked about what her kids would have to go through once she was gone and what she wanted them to learn from her while she was still alive. Jen VanSumeren passed away shortly after I left their home. She wasn't just a lady I lived with, I was a member of that family and I lost a Billet Mom. Jen, I will never forget you, Tom or your kids Billy and Ben.

Hockey Moms play a huge role in our lives and we could not be hockey players without them. If you have a special hockey Mom in your life, please share this with her and let her know how much you care about her. Hockey Moms tell me your story. I want to hear about how you have seen your hockey player grow and the connections they have with their billet families.


Mom, I love you and thank you for all your sacrifices as a Hockey Mom.

For my Billet Moms: Ralene, Kim, Jen, Gigi, Sharon, and Darcey.

Thank you for accepting me into your family and being my Mom away from home.

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