POTSDAM, N.Y.—The SUNY Potsdam men’s hockey team has drafted Hunter Cooke
to be an honorary Bear for the 2012-13 season. Potsdam has joined with
Team IMPACT to welcome Cooke into its family.
Cooke, a 10-year old Hogansburg resident with cystic fibrosis, met Coach
Chris Bernard and Bears Brett Waters, Mike Arnold, Vinny Buttitta, Max
Fogel and Ken Simon on Oct. 19, at Maxcy Hall. He talked hockey and video
games with the players, watched a highlight video and was interviewed by
Voice of the Bears Chris Engel. Like Simon, who is a Massachusetts native,
Cooke is a fan of the Boston Bruins.
After the introductions, the new Bear signed his team contract where he
agreed to be a good citizen, a good son and brother, work hard in school
and represent his team in a positive way. The Bears then presented him
with his own Potsdam jersey. Throughout the season, Cooke will attend
Potsdam practices and home games and visit the Bears in their locker room.
“We are really excited about the opportunity to develop a relationship
with Hunter and his family,” said Bernard. “We want to be there to support
them anyway they deem necessary or important to continue to help him reach
his goals for improved health and improved quality of life in general.”
Team IMPACT’s mission is to improve the quality of life for children
facing adverse issues and events by establishing and expanding vibrant
team-based support networks.
The group endeavors to continually encourage a wide range of team-based
organizations like the Bears to open up their ranks and extend their
laughter, strength and support for children facing these adverse issues,
and events. In doing so, the team joins the child’s support team,
supporting the child in his or her medical journey and beyond.
The Bears open their season at Massena Arena Friday night (Oct. 26) against
Saint Michael’s College and Cooke dropped
the first puck.