Penn State Hockey player turns tragedy into triumph

Nittany Nation

Penn State forward Alec Marsh lived his life on the move a lot growing up, but Connor Mullen remained a constant presence in his life.

“It’s always nice haveing those people outside of the sport and can take your mind off the sport,” Marsh said. “He loved NHL and he would send me goals that he would score and he would send me videos which was funny.”

He also served as Alec’s biggest fan.

“Anytime he saw something about me, maybe I scored or something, he’d text me like oh how was it?” Marsh said.

However, on September 25th, 2016, just two days before Penn State’s first preseason game, the texts stopped coming.

“You know I don’t think anybody really knew how much pain he was going through, I certainly didn’t,” Marsh said.

“I got a call from one of my friends actually, he went to the University of Deleware, he let me know Connor had passed away. It was a suicide,” Marsh said.

“It’s hard to put into words really how you feel right away when you hear something like that and the first thing you think about is like what do I do?” Marsh said.

So Marsh did exactly what Connor would’ve wanted, he continued to skate.

“When it came down to Hockey, I was pretty comfortable with putting it to rest,” Marsh said.

But he brought something with him to remember his buddy, Connor’s number on his stick and a card with a prayer on it.

“I usually look at it everyday,” Marsh said.

Honoring the friendship by remembering the past.

“Keeping that card with me made it a little easier, it’s definitely changed a lot but having that little remembrance there and stuff like that and easy to remember and forget about things,” Marsh said.

Carrying on Connor’s legacy everyt time he touches the ice.

“The one thing I’ve learned through this whole thing is you shouldn’t be afraid to talk to anyone about anything . Your friends and family are there for you, and you’re never alone,” Marsh said.

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