Pete And Repeat

1972 U.S. Olympian Inspired Oswego Brothers To Share The Story Of A Silver Medal Team With Future Generations

People often ask, what inspired us to write Striking Silver: The Untold Story of America’s Forgotten Hockey Team

 

From a very young age when we used to go swimming at our aunt and uncle’s pool, we were always intrigued by the dullish-gray looking medal with what looked like a squiggly snake on it that was displayed in their next door neighbor’s den. It was a silver medal from the 1972 Olympic Winter Games.

 

When Pete Sears came back from Sapporo, Japan in 1972 and spoke at our annual youth hockey banquet, we didn’t fully understand the significance of the medal he held as we posed with him for a Polaroid picture. And we didn’t know the full story behind him winning the silver medal.

 

What we came to realize years later, the story was an important part of USA Hockey history that needed to be told.

 

After playing for Pete when he coached in the Oswego (N.Y.) Minor Hockey Association and Oswego High School, fast forward to the spring of 2004 and an idea was put into action. We had always wanted to write a book together but just didn’t feel like we had the right story. We had kicked around an idea and mentioned to Pete how we wanted to write a story about his 1972 Olympic Hockey team. His reaction, as we came to find out, was similar to his teammates: “Us? Why would anyone want to read about a forgotten team that won a silver medal halfway around the world when nobody was watching?”

 

 

Having worked with one of Pete’s Olympic teammates, Stu Irving, at Merrimack College, Tom got to know more about Pete and Stu’s Olympic team. But, it wasn’t until we started to formally interview them that we realized the impact this group of American hockey players and their coach Murray Williamson had on the development of USA Hockey, as well as their amazing individual journeys to the team.

 

When we started writing the book, we didn’t have a publisher and we barely knew what “writing a book” entailed. Thankfully, we figured it out, got a publisher and were able to  chronicle the exploits of this very special team.   

 

This year marks 50 years of their accomplishment in Sapporo, and the friendships they forged for a lifetime.

 

Tom and Jerry Caraccioli are the authors of Striking Silver: The Untold Story of America’s Forgotten Hockey Team

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