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New York Sled Rangers Gives Wheelchair-Bound Kids A Chance To Play Hockey


by CBS News Cindy Hsu

This tremendous video effort was made by John Cole.  It really captures what the Sled Rangers are all about.  Thanks very much to John for putting this together.

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Mostly everyone is pretty sick of the freezing weather, but there’s one group of determined kids that certainly still is enjoying it.

They called themselves the New York Sled Rangers and they’re members of New York’s only ice hockey team for disabled kids, CBS 2′s Cindy Hsu reported Saturday.

“I like it. It’s fun being with people like me, and I just have a lot of excitement,” said New York Sled Ranger Sam Greenberg.

“These kids are part of a team, an integral part of a team, scoring goals, skating and we rely on them to be a real part of the team,” said coach Bill Greenberg.

The team is pretty new, only about two years old, but they’ve already tripled in size. Their goal is to enlist 100 players, Hsu reported.

Anyone between the ages of 5 and 23 who is in a wheelchair is welcome to join.

“You’re able to look at the kids, figure out what they need, build their skills, build their self-esteem not just on the ice, but off the ice as well,” said coach Victor Calise.

Most of the kids told Hsu this is the first time they’ve been able to take part in a competitive sport.

“It’s really a great experience. Like I’ve been a Rangers fan as long since as I can remember and to be able to play a disabled sport is a great experience,” said Edward Friedman.

“Everyone on the team is just like me so I don’t feel like I’m the only one,” Maron Rossman said.

The coaches agree it really is more than just a game.

“Having them realize their potential, and seeing the excel at it is something that’s truly amazing,” Calise said.

The Sled Rangers’ season is coming to an end, but even after the weather warms up, they’ll be practicing for next winter.