Boston Sports Photography by Walpole Sports Photographer, Dan Busler { Boston Whiffle Ball Challenge 2014 }

Travis Roy Foundation – “Helping Others Move Forward” … Franciscan Hospital for Children –  “Providing Compassionate Care” 

These are the organizations behind the Boston Whiffle Ball Challenge which was held at Boston University’s Nickerson Field on June 22, 2014 

Hundreds of players came out for the day of some serious whiffle ball, food, family and support. And thousands of dollars were raised for these worthy causes through their generosity. 

Here’s a look at the day that I was honored to be asked to photograph.

Boston Sports Event Photography by Walpole Sports Event Photographer, Dan Busler. Travis Roy, Franciscan Hospital for Children

The 3rd Annual Boston Whiffle Ball Challenge was held on June 22, 2013 on Boston University’s Nickerson Field. The event which brought together 16 teams from the corporate world, college and youth leagues supports Travis Roy Foundation and Franciscan Hospital for Children.

Along with Lenny Clarke, Scott Brown, Gail Huff, Ayla and Ariana Brown, Jamie Erdahl, Adam Pallerin, Jamison Coyle, Tom Caron, Doug Chamberlin, John Nash, Art Page, volunteers , familes and friends who came out in supportof this annual event.

The event was coordinated by Victoria Goodman and her team from Blue Sky Sports who had everything running ahead of schedule. And with 16 teams, celebrities, kids, deliveries … etc this was a massive project which went off without a hitch.


Boston Event Photography by Walpole Event Photographer, Dan Busler – 2013 Charity Beanpot Challenge

Each year former college ice hockey players and members of the corporate business community come together on the afternoon of Boston’s Beanpot Tournament at Boston University’s Agganis Arena to play some hockey at the Charity Beanpot Challenge The event has raised over $ 600,000 to benefit the Travis Roy Foundation and the Mark Bavis Leadership Foundation. Learn more here


Travis Roy Foundation / Francisican Hospital for Children – Wiffle Ball Tournament

The First Annual Travis Roy Foundation / Franciscan Hospital for Children Wiffle Ball Tournament was held at Wake Field in Brighton, MA on June 18, 2011. Everyone had a great time supporting this worthy cause. It was as awesome day!

Ok, that’s my official first paragraph.  But to be candid, it was a blast to be there and volunteer to photograph the event. It was also sad and happy and “eye-opening”.

The event was held on the tiny wiffle ball field behind the hospital which is named after Boston Red Sox player Tim Wakfield .

It was sad to see the children and adults in wheelchairs, happy to see all the corporate sponsers and their teams hitting that whiffle ball with a yellow plastic bat. Eye-opening to hear Travis Roy during his opening remarks say “I would like to be on the field with you, maybe one day I will”.

(footnote – Travis was injured during the first 11 seconds of his college ice hockey career) \

OH!  and it was delicious.  The food – hamburgers, hotdogs, etc was … Excellent!

Here’s a video look at the day.,

Boston Event Photography By Walpole Event Photographer, Dan Busler { Travis Roy Foundation Eleven Seconds that Changed his World }

Probably one of the worst smells I know is that of the locker room of a Boys ice hockey team.  Gastly! And yet, it is a sweet smell to the players (and their proud Moms and Dads) I can assure you. 

Every day … beginning at 5:00 AM – you will find thousands of young girls and boys on the ice … practicing and working toward that day when they too can step out on the ice and hear the crowd cheer their name.

Travis Roy was one of these boys … it was his dream … it was his Dad’s dream for him as well that he would one day play ice hockey for Boston University. That’s the team that went to the Olympics and won the gold medal.  

All the hours of practice paid off and the day came, Travis was selected to play for Boston University.  He must have walked into that arena … for that first game, maybe more frightened than proud … maybe more nauseous than confident .. but he knew that he deserved to be there.

He played for Boston University for eleven seconds that first day … his first game for BU and he suffered an injury that broke his neck. 

His Father must have come down from the stands … stood at the glass … watched Travis as he lay on the ice … then he came out on the ice (as he had done thousands of times over the years) to encourage Travis to “get up Buddy … we’ve got a game to play” But Travis couldn’t get up, he couldn’t move … Travis just looked up at his Dad and said ” We made it Dad!,  I’m playing for BU ! ”

Both of my kids are ice hockey players. I know the smell of that locker room, the early mornings, the quiet conversations on the way to the rink, the happy conversations when they won and the encouraging conversations when they lost. The fear that they would be injured, the way that I yelled during the games with the other Dads … and Moms (the Moms are animals! when they get angry!) . 

Recently I had the opportunity to photograph a corporate gathering where Travis Roy was the guest speaker.  I arrived at 7:45AM to scope the place out … and then found out that Travis was speaking.  I had a decision to make, I knew that my Son would want to meet Travis, to share his love of ice hockey with him and let him know that he thought of him virtually everytime that he stepped on the ice.

So, I texted my Son … “Hey Travis Roy is speaking at this event that I’m photographing … you can come …”  I know that he didn’t believe me that he would be able to come … but I’m also guessing that he was throwing on clothes and flying out the door as we texted a few more lines to each other.

My Son is a NeuroSurgical Nurse Practitioner at a major Boston hospital … he has a first edition of Travis’ book … I think he bought it the day that it came out in 1998, he brought that copy of Travis’ book with him that day.

My Son listened to Travis’ words  … he could relate to them. He was honored to be there, he was there to honor Travis actually.
Here are a few images of my Son speaking with Travis.  

My Son tells me that he told Travis that he went into Neurosurgery because of him.

Travis smiled, signed my Son’s copy of his book, then Travis invited my Son to lunch.

Eleven seconds changed Travis’ life and meeting Travis changed my Son’s and mine.

Here’s a short slideshow / video – which includes still photography and video clips from the day.