Fairport boy helps professional hockey player realize Olympic dream

Updated: 01/16/2014 6:21 PM
Created: 01/16/2014 5:07 PM WHEC.com
By: Justin Granit

One Fairport boy helped a professional hockey player realize his Olympic dream. Eight year old Ryan McDermott was apart of the Winter Classic festivities. His job was to unveil a piece of the Team USA Sochi roster. 

Ryan Suter plays for the Minnesota Wild. He is 6'1” and 196 pounds, not to be confused with Fairport's  Ryan McDermott. Ryan McDermott is 4'3” and 55 pounds. But on New Year's Day at the Winter Classic, the two were one in the same. 

Hockey is a generation affair. The sport is passed down from father to son like family heirlooms.

Steve McDermott said, “We grew up playing hockey since we were very small. Didn't take very many family vacations because anytime there was a break, there was a hockey tournament somewhere.”

Born and raised in Hockeytown, Steve McDermott relocated to Rochester to have a family and five years ago, Steve and Erica's oldest, Ryan, put skates on for the first time.

Ryan McDermott said, “I like having fun with my teammates and playing a lot.”

To no surprise, Steve and Ryan are lifelong Detroit fans and last month, the Red Wings places a call to the Rochester Grizzlies defenseman looking for his services.

Steve McDermott said, “The Detroit Red Wings contacted my brother, who in turn contacted my son, and asked if he wanted to be a part of the Winter Classic as a guest of the Detroit Red Wings.”

Ryan joined 23 other youth hockey players from across the country to help unveil the Team USA roster for the Sochi games. 

Erica McDermott said, “Walking out and seeing my son on the ice in front of 105,000 people with these gigantic NHL players to the left of him was surreal.”

Ryan McDermott said, “I was a little nervous, but happy at the same time. I got to sake on the ice and represent Team USA and Ryan Suter.”

Steve McDermott said, “It was quite an experience for us and our son who was really the star of the show.”

As for the man that McDermott was representing, Suter says having the next generation part of the team is inspiring.

The Sochi games may be 5,000 miles away, but a hockey crazed family from western New York will forever be linked to the American's defenseman and Team USA.

Ryan McDermott said, “I was honored to wear it for him.”

Erica McDermott said, “Now to have this personal connection is quite incredible and to know we played a part in that in some way is pretty outstanding.”

News10NBC is your home for the Sochi Olympic games. News10NBC wll bring you more local stories like Ryan's leading up the opening ceremonies. During the games, we launch the Olympic Zone, a nightly program showcasing Rochester's athletes.


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