Every now and then a story comes along that serves to remind us there’s more to life and living it than winning or losing hockey games. Brent Peterson’s courageous battle against the devastating ravages of Parkinson’s disease is one of those stories.
Peterson, 53, a former member of the Edmonton Oil Kings, was forced to step down as a member of Barry Trotz’s coaching staff with the Nashville Predators last April because of the disease.
Diagnosed with Parkinson`s in 2004, Peterson, who played 620 NHL games with Detroit, Buffalo, Vancouver and Hartford, put his career on the back-burner last April as the debilitating effects of the disease took over.
For those of you not familiar with Peterson`s story, you can find one account of it here.
Peterson is a terrific guy, a hockey man with a real mind for the game and somebody Jim Matheson of The Journal and I, a lot of travelling beat writers for that matter, would seek out when we were in Music City. Petey would fill our notebooks with insightful, thoughtful takes on the game.
In recent weeks, Peterson has been undergoing a therapy known as deep brain stimulation at Vanderbilt in Nashville and the results he`s seen are nothing less than stunning.
So, take two minutes and 40 seconds away from contemplating the Oilers losing streak, trading Ales Hemsky, worrying about how lousy you`re doing in your hockey pool and have a look. You`ll be glad you did.
Here, courtesy of Dirk Hoag of On The Forecheck, is a link to the video.
For those of you out there with friends or loved ones who have battled this disease, you will understand just how amazing the early results of Peterson`s treatments are.
The game of hockey and having a passion for it is a wonderful aside to our daily existence, but real-life stories like the one playing out for Peterson serve to remind us what really matters — health, family and friends.
Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.