Dennis Heaton

dennis-heaton-motivationDennis has played forward for both Dawgs I and Dawgs II squads. He is one of the senior members of Dawg Nation, graduating from Pomona High School in 1976. For two seasons, he had the unique pleasure of playing on the same line as his son Michael, who joined the team in 2009 as soon as he turned 18.

Dennis works in the dairy business, and every Christmas season, it has become a tradition for him to bring bottles of egg nog instead of the traditional beer for the gathering in the parking lot after the game. There are rumors that some extra ingredients get added to the nog by some players, but that has never been confirmed.

During the spring of 2010 Dennis crashed feet-first into the boards at South Suburban Ice Arena. He shattered his ankle in many places, resulting in a surgery to reconstruct the area. During that surgery Dennis contracted an infection, and was forced to go through multiple surgeries to save his leg. These procedures kept Dennis on crutches for and extended length of time and ended Dennis’ hockey career. The rehabilitation process was long and formidable, but Dennis’ courage and strength allowed him to battle through it.

While playing hockey may not be possible in the future, just walking and living a normal life is a blessing. The one thing he will be able to know for sure is that Dawg Nation is behind him every step of the way.