CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—The players on the Harvard men's hockey team have a new teammate. The Crimson adopted Nathan Potvin as a member of the team in a Friends of Jaclyn Foundation gathering Thursday afternoon at Bright Hockey Center.
Nathan, a 12-year-old left wing from Hooksett, N.H., has been battling a spinal cord tumor since age 5. He has traveled to Boston frequently for treatments but now has a new reason to visit. Through Friends of Jaclyn, Nathan has been attending Harvard games and meeting the team throughout the 2010-11 season and is now an official member of the Crimson, complete with his own stall in the Harvard men's hockey locker room.
Nathan's family—parents Mike and Connie and sisters Grace and Paige—joined Nathan and the Harvard players and coaches for the adoption. Following an introduction from Friends of Jaclyn founder Dennis Murphy, Mike and Nathan spoke to the Crimson, and junior forward Eric Kroshus spoke on behalf of his fellow players, welcoming Nathan to the Harvard team.
In addition to skating for his other hockey team, the Manchester Flames, Nathan plays baseball, where his favorite position is shortstop. He also likes to spend time with his dog, a yellow lab named Guenther. His sisters have been adopted by the Harvard softball team as part of Friends of Jaclyn's Safe on the Sidelines program.
The Friends of Jaclyn Foundation is a 501(c)(3), non-profit, charitable organization that matches a child in need of love, support and friendship with a college or high school sports team. The foundation screens for the best match based on the child and family's needs and the team, coach and athletic director's commitment to the foundation's goals.
After the adoption is completed, the child becomes an extension of the team, and a unique bond is formed between the team members, the child and the family. Friends of Jaclyn has completed over 230 adoptions in over 20 different sports and has more than 1,000 teams on its waiting list.
Above right: Nathan and his family pose with the Crimson
Below: Nathan's nameplate above his stall in the Harvard locker room