MARLBORO, MA - The Junior Bruins are proud to announce the creation of the Thomas C. Federico Memorial Award that will be handed out following the AAA tournament season this year. The Thomas C. Federico Memorial award will be given out annually to the player from our AAA tournament team program that best typifies what Tom represented and what son Danny (1992 defensemen) and his wife Mary continue to display. Tom was taken from us too soon, passing away from brain cancer in the summer of 2010.
With the 2012 AAA tournament season kicking into high gear this weekend with 5 B’s teams in action in Toronto we felt this was the perfect time to announce the award. The AAA season has already seen the Brick team (2002′s) win the Flames Spring Classic and the 1996 B’s advance to the playoff round of the WSI in Portland. The Bruins have commissioned a company to construct a trophy that is fitting for this award. When the trophy is finished we will add a picture to this story of it.
The Federico’s were first introduced to the Junior Bruins when Danny was a squirt minor and playing for the ’92 Minuteman Flames and he came out to the Middlesex School for our Sunday Night Skills circa 2001. While one of the youngest on the ice he stepped right in, always worked hard, never complained and gave 100%.
He would first don the black and gold of the Bruins when we first put together our 1992 Junior Bruins AAA tournament team. While on that team, a team that would travel to Montreal, Toronto as well as local tournaments in New England he excelled. What stands out about Danny was not just his on ice performance, as good as that always was, but the way he handled himself. He was the consummate team player and a coach’s dream. He always put the team and his teammates first and in this day and age where, unfortunately, it is a me first culture Danny stood out amongst his peers.
There was never a game, and between his time with the ’92 AAA team, Junior Bruins (Empire) team and Junior Bruins (EJHL) team, he played approximately 450 games for the B’s that he ever put himself ahead of his teammates or the team. Whatever he was asked to do and whatever role he was asked to fill, he just showed up and delivered with a great attitude. If he missed a shift, saw another defensemen play more minutes or if he was not on the ice for a crucial shift late in a game his team first attitude never wavered. We have seen others in this same situation pout and their body language made it clear they cared less about the team and winning and more about themselves.
That hard work translated into a full scholarship to Quinnipiac University where he recently completed his freshman year. He had a strong first season despite missing 15 games due to injury.
Over the ten years that Danny played for the Bruins his parents, Tom and Mary were at the rink showing their support for Danny, his teammates and the Junior Bruins. Tom always had a smile for the players, coaches and other parents at the rink. He was genuinely thrilled to see other
players have success. Too often we see parents jealous of not only players on other teams who have success, but even success of their sons’ teammates. This was never the case with Tom and Mary. They are the standard for what youth hockey parents should be. The rinks and our sport would be a better place with more Tom and Mary Federico’s.
In the dog eat dog world of elite youth hockey where you can find some off the wall, high maintenance, nightmare parents Tom was one of the parents we would wish there was more of. In the 10 plus years Danny played for us we never once fielded a call or had a meeting with Tom where he complained, made excuses for his son or thought he was not getting what he deserved.
There are not enough superlatives to describe Tom and do him justice. He was a breath of fresh air and we are proud that he will always be a member of the Junior Bruins family. There are certainly others like him that we have seen in our program and we are using this award to honor Tom’s name and recognize a player and his family who symbolize what the Federico’s represented. The award will be given to the player who combines on ice success along with the team first attitude that Danny had in addition to parents that carried themselves the way Mary and Tom did.
Tom has a place on the Mount Rushmore of hockey parents and we hope this award will continue to remind the hockey community how missed he is and that he is the role model for all in the game.
At the end of each AAA season we will announce the award winner We will also honor the Recipient of the Thomas C. Federico Memorial Award at the organizations end of the season banquet.