Meet A Dream Maker: Josh Morrissey
As one of the star defencemen on the Winnipeg Jets, Josh Morrissey is a household name for many hockey fans in Manitoba and to some children, getting the chance to meet him is a dream come true.
Morrissey became the Ambassador for The Dream Factory in 2016 and has sacrificed countless hours to help us make dreams come true for kids here in Manitoba who are battling life-threatening illnesses.
As a professional hockey player, Josh is a very busy man. Between workouts, practices, games, Jets related activities, and travel across North America, Morrissey doesn’t have much time to himself, but he still somehow finds the time to help kids going through a really tough time.
“We are beyond fortunate that Josh is someone who takes that responsibility really seriously and always goes above and beyond to make every experience one that will last a lifetime,” said Shannon Patterson, The Dream Factory’s Dream Coordinator.
Eleven-year-old Ethan suffers from an optic nerve glioma (brain tumour) and his dream was to travel with the Winnipeg Jets on a road trip. His Dream started in Winnipeg where he got to meet Josh and the team at a practice before Josh gave him a tour of Bell MTS Place. The following day Ethan and his family attended a game and two days later they flew to Orlando and attended games against the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers.
For children who are fighting life-threatening illnesses and their families, a dream come true means the world. It’s an opportunity to take a small break from the difficult reality of their situation, and just spend time together as a family.
Even when he isn’t the focus of a kid’s dream, Morrissey finds a way to help make dreams come true. Whether it’s donating tickets to a game, signing merchandise to be auctioned off, or helping to host The Dream Factory’s annual golf tournament - Josh is an important member of our Dream Factory family!
On occasion, Josh has also been known to call on some of his teammates to lend a hand when possible. That’s just what happened with Dream Kid Eric.
Eric wanted to go on the ice with the Jets, and meet his favorite player Patrik Laine. Morrissey was more than happy to make sure that Laine was front and center to meet one of his biggest fans.
Dream Kid Zack was 10-years-old when his dream of skating with Morrissey came true. Zack has cerebral palsy and suffers from epilepsy but doesn’t let that slow him down in being a huge hockey fan. Zack had the time of his life skating with Morrissey and scoring some goals on his dad. At the end of the skate, Zack had no shortage of questions to ask Morrisey like what his favorite arena to play in was, or more importantly - what his least favourite food is!
“It’s hard to put into words the energy and excitement of some of these kids when they get to meet Josh. For some, he’s a superhero, and that’s a really special thing for a kid who has just gone through a really, really difficult battle,” said Patterson
Morrissey has been such an instrumental piece in making dreams come true for many kids, whether it has been as a part of the dream himself, or supporting making more dreams come true behind the scenes.
We can’t thank Josh enough for all of the very special moments he has helped create, and we are so lucky to have him as part of our Dream Factory family. Thanks Josh!
Thanks to Andrew Lysack from Red River College’s Creative Communications Program for his help with this story – it is truly appreciated.