BOSTON — Providence senior wing Drew Brown didn’t earn a point, block a shot, make a hit or even take a twirl during practice this year, but his battle to overcome the rare and aggressive cancer known as Ewing’s Sarcoma was by far the Friars’ biggest win of the year.
Declared “cancer-free” two months ago, Brown is not only back in the fold for the Friars’ off-ice activities, but he laced ’em up for a brief spin around the TD Garden ice at the tail end of Providence’s Wednesday practice as well.
The significance of Brown’s on-ice moment resonated deeply with his teammates, who have supported him emotionally, physically and financially through season-long fundraising efforts.
“That was a special moment,” classmate Ross Mauermann said. “He’s been through a lot this year, and just to have him back around the rink, in the dorm, just hanging out with us, it’s kind of back to normal for us. It was awesome to have him put the skates on and get out there.”
“I don’t think you can really put into words something like that,” said goaltender Jon Gillies, “because it’s behind the scenes, all the work that he’s done to get back up on his feet.
“You never heard him complain once throughout anything. You never heard him pity himself, anything like that, so it’s very special to have him here and for him to be able to be back on the ice, a place where he feels very at home. After the journey he’s gone through … it’s definitely special, and I don’t think anybody can adequately describe it.”