Dutcher family embraces game of hockey for the fun of it
Work hard every shift, set up his buddies for a goal when he can or cash in on his own scoring chances is all part of the fun Liam Dutcher finds when he puts on his hockey equipment.
Siblings Carter and Charlie Decker of the Gros Morne Minor Hockey Association pose following a provincial minor hockey tournament at the end of last season.
Carter Decker is a forward in the atom division in the Gros Morne Minor Hockey Association.
Charlie Decker is a member of the Novice II division and shares the same passion for hockey as Carter.
That’s reason to smile for their mom, Patti Payne of Rocky Harbour, who serves as vice-president of the tiny minor hockey community on the Great Northern Peninsula while also filling the role of director for the atom division.
She added a third hockey player to the mix this season when she was able to get Bo Burridge — son of her boyfriend, Rudy Burridge — to pick up the game for the first time.
Hockey is something the family has embraced because it brings them closer together and provides the children with a great outlet to have fun, meet other youth from around the province and keep themselves in good physical conditioning.
Payne wouldn’t have it any other way when she sees how happy her children are when they are shooting the puck around with their friends with not a care in the world.
“It’s a big part of our family, hockey is,” she said. “We can’t wait for it to start up when it gets on the go in October. Everything is evolved around Gros Morne hockey and the kids just love it.”
She admits Rudy isn’t big on hockey, but she’s doing what she can to bring him onside because he wasn’t exposed to the game in the same way growing up.
Carter was motivated to play the game by his dad, Christopher, who preached hockey to him at an early age.
For Carter, he’s just happy to be able to play the game and only wants to have fun with his friends doing something he enjoys.
He doesn’t care about winning or losing. It’s just a game that he can enjoy, so that’s what he plans on doing.
“I just want to be able to have fun with my friends and that’s it,” he said.