Remembering the Late Travis Roy, Who Left a Lasting Impression on the Spartan Community

Eleven seconds. That was all it took. Eleven seconds ended a promising hockey career scarcely before it started — on live television.

Travis Roy was a promising 20-year-old hockey star, moments into his first collegiate game as a Boston University freshman, when a freak accident cracked his fourth vertebra and left him paralyzed from the neck down. One misdirected check in the most important hockey game of his life sent him crashing into the boards, ending his dreams of hockey greatness.

Instead of fulfilling his lifelong dream, he found himself paralyzed and a quadriplegic. Yet when Spartan founder and CEO Joe De Sena talked to him on the Spartan Up! podcast back in 2017, he revealed that he sees his life not as a glass half empty or a glass half full. Rather, he sees his glass as overflowing.

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The Passing of a Legend

On Oct. 29, 2020, Roy tragically passed away due to complications from a recent procedure near Burlington, Vermont. He was just 45 years old. He left a lasting impression on De Sena and the entire Spartan community, and he will be sorely missed and remembered fondly.

His podcast episode was one of the most memorable and inspirational in Spartan Up! history. He went into great detail about how he dealt with such a dramatic shift in his life, the challenges and strategies he used to cope, and offered advice for those who are faced with obstacles.

His Invaluable Lessons

He stressed that sometimes you choose challenges, and other times they choose you. How you handle them is what defines you. He also noted that quality-of-life goals are just as important as career goals, and you shouldn't underestimate the joy in simple moments.

Learn more about his foundation here, check out his exceptional book, and listen to the podcast in its entirety below.

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