Hockey in Hospital Hallways to the Ice

Hockey in the Hospital Hallways to the Ice, by Megan Salle


"I'm ready girlfriend."

"We have to believe she is going to make it," Miranda Jennings said.

"Just classic denial, this can't be," Allen Jennings said.

"Everything was on the cart ready for us to walk out the door, then I got the phone," Miranda Jennings said.

When Joplyn Jennings was born, she was diagnosed with a congenital heart condition called hypo plastic left heart syndrome.


"I lost it. I didn't know what to think, or to say or what to do. You just don't," she said.

Now at four years old, even she can tell you what it means.

"My thing...half of a heart," Joplyn Jennings said.

"It's a condition that the left side of the heart is severely under formed and in most cases almost non existent," he said.

Three open heart surgeries would not hold her back.

She would be roaming the halls, still on IVs pumping medication into her, chest tubes hanging out go her and she is hitting hockey pucks," he said. "From the time she could pick up a hockey stick and start talking, she was talking about hockey and playing hockey."

"Play hockey. Play hockey..." Joplyn said.

"As she played more in the halls, you could see more of that spark coming back to her," he said. "I can't even put into words what it did for her."

This past November, about four and half years after her first big operation, came another step. So, Joplyn suited up.

"My socks they make me look cool," Joplyn said.

She even has a warm up dance.

She's going out on the ice with a bunch of other kids her age that are wearing blades on their feet, so very frightening," Allen said.

Joplyn was playing ice hockey for the first time, but she was a natural.

"She's the real fighter. She's the one that has done it all," Miranda said.

"If she's willing to be out there and be a fighter, they know they can do it too and never give up," Allen said.

One word, inspiring. I'm Megan Salle reporting in Glenrock for K2 Sports.