HANOVER, N.H. – The Dartmouth men’s hockey team visited the Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (CHaD) Monday afternoon.
The Big Green brought with them an incredible number of donations from this weekend’s CHaD Toy Drive held during Saturday night’s 5-1 win against New Hampshire and then again Sunday during the team’s annual Skate With the Big Green.
Once there, all 26 players split up between rooms, delivering presents to kids and their parents spending the Holiday Season there.
The entire team made a special visit to Julie Barber, a local high school hockey player battling illness. Julie, already wearing a Dartmouth Hockey t-shirt, was presented a home jersey with her number 17 on from the group that all managed to fit in her room with well wishes.
“This is easily one of our favorite days of the year,” Grant Opperman, a senior and alternate captain said. “We spend a lot of time together at the rink and in the dorms, but this is an event we get to do all together and have fun with these kids. I think we like coming here and playing with all the toys as much as they like playing with us.”
“This is my fourth year of coming here for this and it gets better every year for us,” Opperman added.
Thanks to the overwhelming generosity of the Big Green’s fans who donated, six cars packed to the top with toys were delivered to CHaD on Monday.
“For us, we spend four years in the Upper Valley community, but we’re kind of insulated on campus when we’re here,” junior and team captain Carl Hesler remarked. “This is a day we get to go out into a different area and give back in some way to the community who gives so much support to us.
“Obviously we can’t do it on our own. We are just the delivery elves today, so we make sure we thank all those who came out to our game and skated with us that dropped off all these gifts. It means so much for us to give them to CHaD and the kids,” Hesler added.
The entire Big Green hockey program thanks those who donated and are the heart and soul of this wonderful annual event.