Matthew Dennison’s number to be retired Saturday in West Warwick

WEST WARWICK, R.I. (WLNE)– Before West Warwick/Exeter-West Greenwich hockey team’s opening night of the 2022-2023 season Saturday, they will honor their late captain by retiring his number.

Dennison died in March after being struck by an alleged drunk driver. His teammate and close friend, Kevin MacDonald, survived the crash.

Brenda Dennison, Matthew’s mother, always knew her son would be remembered for his legacy at Benny Magiera Ice Rink.

“During the season I was having a conversation with Matthew, and he was just on fire,” said Dennison. “He was doing so well. He was the leading scorer in the state, and I said, ‘They should just retire your number after the end of this season buddy, because nobody is going to be good enough to wear that after you.'”

Kristine Bouthillier, MacDonald’s mother, says the ceremony Saturday will be bittersweet.

“The boys were brothers, this shouldn’t have to be a thing,” she explained. “So, that cuts deep, and at the same time it’s a beautiful thing to see how much people care in that these things are being done, and that he is going to continue to be remembered.”

Just months after the crash in February, the Dennison’s and the community launched the Matthew Dennison Charitable Foundation.

As explained on their website, the mission is to, “give back to the community by providing college scholarships, & hockey-based assistance to individuals and organizations in need, and to provide support to victims of senseless DUI-related tragedies.”

Brenda Dennison hopes her son’s jersey will serve as a reminder to do good and help others.

She concluded, “Something good has to come out of this… We’re 24 hours away from actually pulling that rope to lower that jersey. It’s going to be an emotional night.”

To learn more and donate to the MD16 Foundation, go to md16foundation.org.

 

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