Uncle Denny’s Winnebago: Second Stop

Jump aboard my Uncle Denny’s Winnebago.

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Today I talk with Stanley Cup winner,  Shjon Podein. Get to know the former professional ice hockey left winger, played 11 seasons in the National Hockey League for the Edmonton Oilers, Philadelphia FlyersColorado Avalancheand St. Louis Blues.

Even at an early age coaches described Podein as “a pain in the ass” — a huge compliment in the hockey world. The high expectations he held of himself and others around him combined with his unstoppable energy propelled him through the minors, into the NHL and ultimately to reach his goal of winning the Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche.

Talk about Foolish Perseverance. He tells us how nothing would stop him from getting on the ice, including the beat up old car he bought with a teammate for $500. After a short time the junker only moved in reverse. No problem for Podein. He continued to drive it to and from the rink… BACKWARDS!

If I had to choose one word to describe Shjon Podein, it would be “passionate”. He’s passionate about everything, even the simple things in life. Take his dog, Little Buddy, for example. Podein’s favorite tattoo happens to be Little Buddy’s initials, “LB”. I know, a dog tattoo isn’t necessarily extreme but, when “Little Buddy” passed away Podein wasn’t quite ready to let go of the critter.  Listen to him describe his quest to find a taxidermist who would actually…uh…well, you know what they do.

Besides tossing the puck around and stuffing dogs, Podein and his wife Shari pour their energy and love into The Shjon Podein Children’s Foundation, a wonderful organization, also known as “Team 25”.

The couple saw the need in their community for athletic programs for children with mental and physical disabilities and created adaptive floor hockey camps, allowing these children to be active and play hockey. The program is expanding into communities throughout Minnesota and ultimately across the nation.

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