Skating past Father time- 94-year old Marsh Webster continues hockey career
Marsh Webster first made the Varsity hockey team at Valley High School in Syracuse to start his hockey career.
That was in 1939.
His career continues in 2017 playing competitively at the Skaneateles YMCA, 78 years later.
His playing days on the ice only took a break once so he could serve in the war.
That would be World War II.
"50 Years ago I would've jumped out of my seat and shot out there! But not now." Marsh quipped as he finished putting his equipment
Indeed, Marsh Webster is skating past Father Time and inspiring people all over Central New York. Including the "kids" that skate with him in his group of players generally older than 40 years old at Skaneateles.
"Just a great bunch of guys to play with, that's one of the things that helps me to keep coming back" Marsh says. He adds that if they can get something out of watching him play, "that's a good thing".
"They see (me) out here and think if he can do it, so can I" Webster says.
The bond goes well beyond the ice. Yes, there is a fun hockey connection, especially with 90-year old line mate D.D. Lynch. For instance, when Lynch told me he had "two knee replacements and hip replacement" and Webster jumped in to lovingly say "Too bad they couldn't do anything for your brain" with a smile from both men.
But there's an emotional connection, one that helped Marsh get through one of the toughest moments of his life.
"They're more than just a hockey team, they're a support group. My wife died about 3 years ago and the outpouring of support I got from these guys was just great" he told me recently at the rink.
Hockey isn't just serving as a fun way to keep active, it's a way to keep his mind off what he's lost and on what he still has.
"There's so many hours in the day" Marsh says and that if he can use hockey as a way to utilize those hours a couple days per week, that's a good thing.
He knows his career is winding down, despite not having any plans of slowing down. Whenever he can no longer lace them up he can take stock in the fact that he's skated so long and made great friends.
"I've enjoyed it" he says with a look of fulfillment and even a bit of sadness thinking about when he may have to hang up his white "Chiefs" jersey.
What a joy it's been for everyone to watch Marsh Webster skate well and defy the odds.