East Valley native Lyndsey Fry, a member of the 2014 U.S. Olympic Women’s Ice Hockey Team, spoke to fifth- and sixth-graders at Horizon Community Learning Center (HCLC) in Ahwatukee on Thursday about pursuing their dreams.

During her speech, Fry told students about her journey being a member of the U.S. Olympic Women’s Ice Hockey Team, a dream she had when she played roller hockey as a young girl.

In 2002, Fry learned about women’s ice hockey, and would fly back and forth to Colorado to play, because there wasn’t a huge following for the sport in Arizona.

After high school, Fry began playing college hockey at Harvard, but was eager to pursue her dream of representing her country on the Olympic stage.

Fry, who grew up in Chandler, was given a shot at her dream in January when she learned she made the 2014 Olympic Women’s U.S. Hockey Team, which took home the silver medal in Sochi, Russia.

“Everything that I worked hard for since my roller hockey years came true,” Fry told HCLC students.

Throughout the presentation, Fry showed students different highlight reels from her roller hockey days to when she competed in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Fry said she hoped that students at HCLC would continue to “dream big” and purse those dreams after her presentation.

“I think the big thing for them is to be able to see somebody, who is from Arizona, kind of going out there and able to do it. I really hope that it shows them that they really can do anything, no matter what there dream is,” Fry said. “Hard work does pay off in so many ways, and opens so many doors, and I hope that’s what they take away from it.”

Fry wanted to speak HCLC students because her younger brother, Wesley, attended the school through his sophomore and senior years, and wanted to spread her message.

“I was more than happy to do it and any opportunity I have to speak to the kids and spread the message, I’m more than happy to do it,” Fry said. “I think it’s important for them to have a good role model.”

Her inspiring words hit home to many students inside HCLC’s multipurpose room, especially sixth-grader Avery Jones, who dreams of owning her own bakery shop.

“She talked in a way that was fun and in a way that you could hang out with her and it wouldn’t be weird because she’s a celebrity,” Jones said. “I always wanted to own a bakery shop of my own, and I’m going to keep on going until I’m successful.”

Tracy Carey, health and physical education teacher at HCLC, said Fry’s message of staying in school and being successful in the classroom would go a long way with her students.

“I think even if you’re not a hockey player, or you don’t know who she is, just the idea of an Olympic athlete talking to the kids is awesome.”

• Contact writer: (480) 898-4903 or dochoa@ahwatukee.com.

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