Submitted by Michael Hickey on Wed, Nov 4, 2015

Tanner Bowers (age 8). His life is hockey and works harder on and off the ice then any other kid I have seen. He is diagnosed with autism and because of his sensory issues it was impossible to take him to events that where loud and crowded, it was always result in him having a melt down due to over stimulation. When I took him to his first hockey game at the "Medford madhouse" (a title given to our rink by visiting teams due the the extremely loud and crazy fans.) to watch the Southern Oregon Spartans play I didn't have much hope of being there very long. It was tough for him at first but once the puck dropped he fell in love with hockey and his sensory issues wouldn't stand in the way of him watching the game. Now he LOVES being a part of the crowd and cheering for his team. On the ice he has a almost obsessive passion and drive to be the best hockey player possible and will not take failure to accomplish his goals lightly. Off the ice he plays street hockey, watches the NHL games on tv in order to figure out what they do and how he can in turn do it himself and he plays NHL video games on his playstation, he uses his video games to learn and perfect strategies that he hope to use on the ice. When playing street hockey he has a very strong and laser accurate shot, he tends to shoot top shelf  so he is often called a "head hunter". Hockey has given him drive and a sense of accomplishment. Since he attended his first game and picked up his first stick he is a completely different kid! Where once we worried about his future and his ability to cope with the world as he got older, we now see a bright future where he can and will succeed at what ever he puts his mind too.

Date of Publication: 
Wed, Nov 4, 2015