Detroit Young Hockey Player of the Game celebrates diversity and inclusion

DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings believe hockey is for everyone, and the organization is constantly finding new ways to shine a light people from the Metro Detroit community who support diversity, equity and inclusion for all who want to enjoy hockey.

This season, the Red Wings and proud partner Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan continue to celebrate diversity, equity and inclusion with the Young Hockey Player of the Game, which recognizes a local young hockey player at every Red Wings home game and celebrates the player’s unique story.

Each month for the remainder of the 2021-22 season, the Red Wings will spotlight a Young Hockey Player of the Game and build on their inspiring journey.

The first young player the Red Wings recognize is 15-year-old Lucas Jodoin, who courageously shows his solidarity with the LGBTQ + community every time he touches the ice.

Jodoin, who lives in Beaverton, Michigan, and is a defenseman for his Tri-Valley Titans hockey team, stood out from the crowd in 2020 when he rainbow duct tape applied to his hockey stick in honor of the Pride month before his last hockey tournament of the year.

Jodoin said he has openly gay friends outside of hockey and has attended LGBTQ + family weddings, so he wanted to show his support for the community on the ice as well.

It was a way for Lucas to show his support for everyone, that everyone should have the opportunity to play if they wanted to, ”his mother, Julia Jodoin, told USA Hockey after her son was gone. recognized for the first time for having skated in solidarity with the LGBTQ + community.

For his courage and continued selflessness, Jodoin was selected as the Young Hockey Player of the Game for the Red Wings Pride Night on October 19. He was selected by You Can Play, an organization that works to ensure safety and inclusion for all who participate in sports, including athletes, coaches and LGBTQ + fans.

“He will defend others who may not be able to defend themselves,” Julia Jodoin said. “And long after you forget whether you won this tournament or not, or long after that hockey game’s trophy is covered in dust, people will remember his character. For me, that’s what it is.

Jodoin is currently enjoying his sophomore year at Meridian High School in Sanford, Mich., And continues to champion the LGTBQ + community as a member of the Tri-Valley Titans, a varsity hockey team made up of students from several center schools. from Michigan.

Jodoin said he does not regret his decision to stand up for his beliefs and will continue to stand up for his friends, family and all members of the LGBTQ + community.

“I just thought it was something that didn’t get as much attention as it should,” Jodoin said. “You have to be able to be yourself. I would do it again to raise awareness and show that it matters.”

Catherine J. Martinez