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For the past two months, we’ve been highlighting Penguins fans on the FIRST LINE in the fight against Covid-19 on our social media pages.  We wanted to give you a little more info on some of those making a difference, so every Monday we’re introducing you to one of those nominees in our FAN FILES feature.  

Today, we’re chatting with Christopher Matys.

Are you an essential worker?  

Yes. I am a Registered Nurse and Clinical Coordinator at a Local Emergency Department, EMT and Volunteer Firefighter.

For you, what has been the most challenging part of this transition?

Balancing work and home life with our 8 yr old Daughter Sophia who loves Hockey and having my Wife Deirdre working from home.  We try to keep school work, family time, play time and my work schedule semi balanced. Deirdre has been great with developing gradual reopening plans at her work with their day to day activities.

What hobbies or activities have you focused on while social distancing?

Playing board and card games, cleaning and organization at home, paying attention to the Federal and State guidelines recommended to us.

Is your family, neighbors or community doing anything unique to stay connected?

Our daughter’s school has been using Google Classroom and Zoom to stay connected with her Second Grade Teacher and her Classmates. We recently attended two small socially distanced parades in honor of her teachers and school staff.

I try to spend time on the phone daily with my mother in law who lives in a skilled nursing facility, and I limit normal every day face to face contact with my mother at her home.

What type of music or artists do you listen to?    

I listen to a mixture of Music – Country, Classic and 80’s Rock and Roll, and Talk Radio

When you are home, what are your favorite snacks?

Just about anything in the cabinet, but a little too much lately.

Do you have a book, recipe or TV recommendation?

I recommend the Blacklist, but enjoy a variety of Movies from the 80’s and 90’s. Goodfellas, Casino, The Sopranos, Boston Legal and other shows that one can now “stream” or simply request.

Do you have any suggestions that may help others physically or emotionally?

Take some time to yourself or spend with your immediate family. Unplug the devices but also learn more about them and what you can do to enhance your own skills.

The basics of life – spend free time in your backyard, a local park, walk within the neighborhood and stop to smell the flowers. “Take a look around – you might have missed something”.

What’s your favorite hockey memory?

2018 – The Teddy Blueger goal that initiated the “Teddy ear Toss”. We took several stuffies with us then pitched them out on the ice for Teddy’s goal. Our first game where our daughter Sophia understood some of the basics of how the game entertains and its challenges. She loved watching the action, but the goal horn blowing multiple times kind of scared her. She is over that now. At that game, we purchased a $10 GOALS Foundation puck and received a Sam Lafferty #18 signed puck. We were trying to figure out who he was on Google at the same time he scored a goal.

When hockey returns, what excites you most? 

Walking around the Arena and socializing as was common before March. We will appreciate what we miss now, just simply stopping by a friend’s seat, shaking hands with some of the staff and people we know. We would stop by the Jersey raffle each game and fill out the tickets using a common public pen.

We cannot wait to watch the warm ups, thinking about who may be the starting Goaltender. We spent the weekend in Pittsburgh and attended the Hurricanes @ Penguins game just prior to the closure; now that is off the bucket list and we can’t wait to attend future AHL games.