Moving Forward

February 02, 2004

HIRED As an in-studio analyst for University of Maine hockey
telecasts, Travis Roy, the Boston University forward who in 1995
was paralyzed from the neck down 11 seconds into his first shift
as a Terrier. "They gave me a microphone and an earpiece and
threw me into the fire," Roy, 28, says of his Jan. 17 debut on
WMTW-TV, the ABC affiliate in Auburn, Maine. "It's nice in that
it's something I can do. It doesn't take arms and legs, so
physically it makes a lot of sense. And who knows what will come
from it? Whenever I'm presented with an opportunity like that,
it's easy to say no, to not do it out of fear, but I don't want
to give myself the chance to decline."

Roy, a North Yarmouth, Maine, native and highly regarded high
school recruit, severed his fourth cervical vertebra when he
struck the end boards head-on during a game against North Dakota.
His story drew national sympathy (he reflected on the injury and
his rehabilitation in the 1998 book Eleven Seconds, written with
SI's E.M. Swift), and Roy's perseverance was an inspiration. He
stayed close to the team and worked in BU's sports information
department until graduating with a degree in public relations in
2000, and is now a motivational speaker, making some 40
appearances a year.

As an analyst, Roy, who lives alone in a Boston apartment and has
taken up painting (he holds the brush in his teeth), works from
the WMTW studio in Auburn, doing pre- and postgame commentary and
between-period analysis of the third-ranked Black Bears. "The
accident took away a lot of my passion and my dad's passion for
the game," says Roy, whose father, Lee, was a standout winger at
Vermont and an amateur coach. "When you spend your life with
hockey as long as we did, it's always in the back of your mind,
Why am I not playing, why is my dad not here watching? But you've
still got to make the best of it." --Daniel G. Habib

COLOR PHOTO: JASON BRAND/HIGHPOINT PICTURES (ROY IN '95) NEW CANVAS Roy (left, in high school) is upbeat--and painting.
COLOR PHOTO: ELISE AMENDOLA/AP (ROY IN '03) [See caption above]

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)