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Ever heard of Chicago Blackhawks backup goalie Scott Darling? The president has.

He has proven himself to be a leader off the ice as well as on.

Ever heard of Chicago Blackhawks backup goalie Scott Darling? The president has.

In hockey, backup goalies don't often get much credit — especially from the president.

But that's exactly what happened when the Stanley-Cup-winning Chicago Blackhawks made their way to the White House on Thursday for an awards reception.

Among the people President Obama wanted to give credit to: backup goalie Scott Darling — who played in just 14 regular-season and five playoff games last year.


GIFs from the White House/YouTube.

Why? Well, it was actually something that Darling was involved with off the ice.

Obama wouldn’t have known to praise Darling without a serendipitous exchange between an Uber driver and a Beer League Hockey Player.

Here's a story an Uber driver told beer league hockey player Kane Van Gate, who posted it to Twitter:

"I knew nothing about hockey until I gave Scott Darling a ride. He changed my life. When I picked him up he had a man with him. A man who had been through some really trying times and Scott just so happened to see him on the street and strike up a conversation. So he had me drive this guy to a hotel and he paid for him to stay at that hotel for an entire month until he got back on his feet, and even got him some groceries.

I've never met anyone in my life who was so sincere. I later Googled him, found out who he was and now I think hockey is the greatest sport in the world."

Now, you're probably thinking, "That's an oddly specific story, but how do you know the Uber driver wasn't just making it up or missing a few facts?" Well, Darling confirmed the story via his own Twitter account, though he hasn't said anything else about it since.

Darling warms up before a game last season. Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images.

Now, it really should be noted that Darling is nowhere near one of the National Hockey League's top-paid players (he's making $575,000 this year — which is obviously a lot for those of us who aren't professional athletes, but you get the idea).

"He paid for him to stay at that hotel for an entire month until he got back on his feet, and even got him some groceries."

Pretty cool, right?

Darling lifts the Stanley Cup trophy during the Blackhawks Championship Rally last June. Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images.

And while Darling has remained hush-hush on the whole thing, Obama felt such a selfless act was worth highlighting.




Ever the modest one, here's how Darling reacted to the presidential kudos:

You can watch Obama's remarks below (go to about 5:30 for his shout-out to Darling).


Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
True

Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

Keep Reading Show less
Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
True

Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

Keep Reading Show less