DANVERS — With two Olympic silver medals around her neck, U.S. women’s hockey star Meghan Duggan arrived at Danvers High Saturday on the back of a firetruck with its sirens blaring for a rally in her honor.
Duggan captained the team during its nearly successful run for a gold medal in the Olympics in Sochi, Russia, last month.
While the U.S. team fell to Canada 3-2 in the final game with a “heartbreaking” overtime loss, it was Capt. Duggan who provided the initial spark for her team, scoring the first goal of the game. Many in town, including a core group of several families that had grown up with her, rooted hard for Duggan, gathering at a local pub on Route 1 to watch the final. Many were at the rally Saturday.
After climbing off the ladder truck, Duggan greeted the crowd, kneeling to take pictures with kids, letting others hold the heavy medals from the Vancouver and Sochi Olympic games.
Her mother, Mary, her father, Robert, her sister, Katelyn, and her brother, Bryan, a talented hockey player growing up, were there, along with aunts, uncles and cousins.
While the crowd wanted to show its appreciation for Duggan, she turned the tables on these well-wishers.
“I can’t thank you guys enough for all your support and everything this town has done for me since I was your guys’ age,” she said to a group of kids standing at the front of the crowd near the podium set up in Vye Gym in the high school.
“It’s very special to see all these people come out,” Katelyn Duggan said later. “They want to meet my little sister. She’s a celebrity to them. It’s incredible the support she has from this town and these people. It’s amazing to see all these kids that come out.”