What seemed like a typical day at the rink turned into an extraordinary day for VJW Mite Minor goaltender MacMcCarthy and his team.
Mac’s father, Sergeant First Class Justin McCarthy, has been stationed in Afghanistan since March. He made a special visit home recently and surprised his family and the entire Warriors squad by showing up at the Haverhill Valley Forum last week during practice.
the practice session, the players walked into the locker room and
watched as their teammate Mac shouted “this is my Dad!” Standing there
in full fatigues was Sergeant First Class McCarthy. It was a moment
that won’t soon be forgotten by anyone in that room.
“Mac talks about his dad all the time in the locker room and you can hear the pride in his voice,” said RobCarpentier,
head coach of the VJW Mite Minors. “It's amazing to me that a
seven-year-old boy understands enough to know that his dad is doing
something not only for his family but for all families."
day, Sergeant First Class McCarthy presented the team with an American
flag that was flown over his base in Afghanistan on September 11, 2011 -
the 10th anniversary of 9/11, in honor of the Valley Junior
Warriors. The flag - along with a certificate of authenticity - will be
hung in the Haverhill Valley Forum.
“It has been an inspirational
experience for me to watch Nicki (Mac’s mom) deal with the grind of a
hockey season,” said Carpentier. “She is always upbeat and positive with
little reminders to Mac of "remember what daddy says". I don't know
that any of us truly understand how special it has been for the family
to have Dad come home, but the smile on Mac's face was amazing. I'm
happy I was able to witness it.”
The Valley Junior Warriors
wish Sergeant First Class McCarthy and the rest of Detachment 41 Task
Force Scorpion stationed in Afghanistan Godspeed and safe returns
(hopefully in time for the NEHL playoffs in March 2012).
further support of Our Troops, the VJW Mite Minors and the VJW ’02
Elites will be assembling care packages for the troops based in
Donations will be collected at the Haverhill Valley
Forum on Thursday, November 18th and Friday, November 19th. We thank you
for any support you can provide.