Jump to content

Dwayne Roloson


Recommended Posts

About a year and a half ago, I wrote on here that a very good friend of mine's 12 year old son was killed while riding a bike by a moving car. Many of you were touched by this and expressed prayers and condolences. It was so shocking, as I'd known this youngster since he was an infant and he was a huge sports fan, used to come and sit to watch at my girls basketball practices, but especially hockey.

In this day and age where athletes rarely get good publicity, I wanted to recognize an athlete for something incredibly touching, Tampa Bay Lightning goalie, Dwayne Roloson.

My friend's son, Kelly, was a pee wee hockey player and often attended goalie camps run by Roloson in Canada. They didn't have a ton of money, having three kids, but always saved to send Kelly to the camp. Kelly was an outstanding goalie and his team won the local Chicago Wolves hockey championship in his final game. His dream was to play in the NHL.

When Kelly was killed, heading home on his bike to watch a Blackhawks playoff game in 2010, the Hawks and many other NHL teams sent gifts to a benefit in his honor, including hosting an oldtimers game, to help defray the cost of the funeral. Blackhawk greats Denis Savard and Bobby Hull signed autographs for hours to help raise money there.

The funeral itself was one of the most touching things I have ever witnessed, seeing his casket wheeled through forty young teammates raised sticks. At the burial, when they lowered it into the ground, many of his teammates tossed their jerseys into the ground to be buried with him, a gesture that made many people simply lose it.

Dwayne Roloson is the oldest goalie in the NHL at the age of 41, when most netminders are in the 24-28 range, so you already know he's special. He played for the New York Islanders at the time of Kelly's death and sent his Islanders jersey to the funeral, which had many hockey jerseys draped around the casket. He started wearing a shamrock in Kelly's honor on the plate on the back of his goalie's mask, with Kelly's number 30 in it.

This past year, Roli the goalie (as he's called) was dealt to the Lightning and when he arrived there, went on a terrific roll, leading the Lightning to the seventh game of the semi finals before they were eliminated by the eventual champion Boston Bruins.

He added "KR, The Dream Lives On" to the back of his mask.

This year, he has decided to change his lucky number 35 to Kelly's number 30.

Can you imagine how incredibly proud Kelly's parents must be to see a professional athlete do something like that for a youngster that simply attended his hockey camps? The championship trophy at Roloson's camp is now called the "Kelly Ryan Cup".

I know many of you are not hockey fans here, aside from myself, Marvin, Kim, and a few others, but if you ever wanted to root for an athlete in life, I can think of no better one than Dwayne Roloson.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I remember your previous post about this very well. I am very familiar with Roli the Goalie, since he spent a few years as Hasek's back-up for the Buffalo Sabres.

He was a class act then, and it's nice to know he still is. Buffalo fans still hold him in high regard, and welcome him warmly when he visits the area. Nice to see a pro athlete be a positive influence, instead of the "bad boy" negative garbage we too often hear about.

Now, who's ready for some hockey??????????


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...