The Eyes Free Sports Podcast

The Eyes Free Sports Podcast: Ep 37 - Hitting the Ice for Blind Hockey with Kevin Shanley

May 8, 2021

In Episode 37 of the Eyes Free Sports podcast, we visit with Kevin Shanley. One of the “founding fathers” of blind hockey in the United States, Shanley spoke about:

  • Growing up in Boston, MA and why his parents always let him hang out with fully sighted kids
  • Attending Saint Michael's College in Vermont and then Clarkson University in New York
  • Finding his niche in engineering and starting his career with IBM
  • Interning with the Naval Research Lab in its marine meteorology division
  • Going back to school for a master’s degree from UMass Boston and returning to Clarkson University for a Ph.D.
  • Working for Rolls-Royce on the gas turbine engines of aircraft
  • Changing careers and going into higher education to help launch a new mechanical engineering program at the State University of New York (SUNY) in New Paltz, NY
  • Playing beep baseball for the Boston Renegades for one season
  • How he got into playing hockey as an adult with fully sighted peers but then discovering Courage Canada, now known as the Canadian Blind Hockey Association
  • Competing in the first national Canadian blind hockey tournament and how he felt so accepted by the camaraderie of the players
  • How he helped arrange the first-ever blind hockey summit in the U.S.
  • The adaptations and rules of blind hockey
  • The possibility of blind hockey getting into the Paralympics in 2026
  • How several NHL clubs have supported local blind hockey programs
  • His guide dog, Bo, from Freedom Guide Dogs and the tremendous benefits of this partnership


Learn more about blind hockey in the U.S. at Learn more about blind hockey in Canada at

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