DE PERE, Wis. (WFRV) – De Pere native Patrick Danen has played basketball his whole life, but his journey is sadly coming to an end.
Throughout his years as an athlete, he’s had his fair share of struggles. When he was just 6 months old, he had meningitis which left him completely deaf. Being a deaf basketball player has taught him many things, but most importantly, to stay positive.
Patrick had the opportunity to play with the United States Deaf Team in the summer of 2018. The team won the gold medal in Washington DC. After this, they brought him up to the national team and he was able to travel to Poland in the summer of 2020 to win another gold medal.
“He’s a phenomenal teammate, on the basketball court, he is always the first one to congratulate guys; when he’s sitting on the bench during the games he gets that bench up and going and he is always having fun with the student section,” says SNC Athletic Trainer Evan Teske.
At the beginning of his freshman year playing at St Norbert College, he began having issues with his heart. He was then diagnosed with atrial fibrillation (a-fib), which made it even harder for him to play. After having multiple surgeries he decided it was best for him to not continue playing his senior year.
“I don’t see this as a negative I see these as a positive it makes me unique, it makes me different, and who I am as a person,” Danen says.
Danen will still support his teammates from the sideline and is excited to see what is to come on his journey. He’d like to thank his family, coaches, teammates and friends for always supporting him.