Kim Muir’s 20th year of scholarships honors former instructor
Left to right are this year's winners of Kim Muir's Can't Skate, Can't Play Scholarships: Squirt Juliette Jakubik, Mite Ethan Vargas, Pee Wee Kate Miller, Muir, Bantam Jack Lisker and Midget Willie McGuire. The $500 awards brought to $50,000 the scholarships Muir has given in 20 years.
Nick Malysa is best known in hockey circles as a defenseman for the Plymouth Whalers of the Ontario Hockey League from 2009-2014.
He was also an instructor for Kim Muir Power Skating during camps.
But these days Malysa, now 26, is doing much more important work. He is a Navy Seal, with Seal Team 7, and is currently deployed.
Muir recognized Malysa for his sacrifice during her Summer Power Skating Camp, which was held at Suburban Ice Farmington Hills. Muir also continued her 20-year tradition of awarding scholarships in the form of a $500 Educational IRA to each of five of her students, one in the Mite, Squirt, Pee Wee, Bantam and Midget age groups.
The winners are determined by an essay that each student is required to write. This year’s theme was “The characteristics of a Navy Seal. If they could be a Navy Seal, would they like to be a Navy Seal and what it means to them about freedom in this country,” according to Muir.
“We really want to teach what we feel is the most important in life, not just the athlete, but the student and also just looking at other things, what’s good out there,” Muir said on Tuesday afternoon, after the winners were announced at Suburban Ice Farmington Hills. “…We want to pay homage to him (Malysa), support him and thank him for his services.”
The winners were Mite Ethan Vargas, Squirt Juliette Jakubik, Pee Wee Kate Miller, Bantam Jack Lisker and Midget Willie McGuire.
McGuire said participating in athletics is a positive for someone whose goal is to be a Seal.
“I feel like sports have a lot to do with (building) characteristics for somebody that would help to become something like a Navy Seal,” said the 17-year-old. “And I know, personally, I have some friends that are planning to go into the military, and they play hockey with me and that gave me the inspiration to write this essay.”
Jakubik, 9, has a unique perspective because she was born in China.
“In China they don’t have as much freedom as we have here. And Navy Seals help us have freedom,” she said.
The jerseys worn by the camp’s participants had “SEAL TEAM” over the number 7 on their backs.
Muir has now given away a total $50,000 in scholarships.