A Brother's Bond: Ferner brothers enjoy special relationship within Muskies organization
SIOUXLAND NATIVE AND MUSKIES CAPTAIN BRADY FERNER HAS ALWAYS ENJOYED A SPECIAL BOND WITH HIS YOUNGER BROTHER, DYLAN, WHO SUFFERS FROM CEREBRAL PALSY TONIGHT WE LOOK INSIDE THIS BROTHERLY BOND AND HOW DYLAN HIMSELF HAS BECOME A SPECIAL PART OF THIS MUSKIES TEAM.
Brady Ferner has always enjoyed a special bond with his younger brother Dylan, who suffers from Cerebral Palsy. As team captain of the Sioux City Musketeers, the Dakota Dunes native bears many responsibilities within the team. But none more important than playing the role of big brother.
"Being the older brother, I think he's always looked up to me", says Brady. Sports have always connected us in a special way. He's not able to play sports, so I think he's always lived his sports through me and it's always connected us on a personal level."
Dylan adds, "I've been very fortunate to have him as a brother and I definitely have someone to look up to for the rest of my life, so I'm very lucky for that."
Dylan has never been able to join his older brother on the ice, but when Brady signed with Sioux City in 2016, he found a way to bring Dylan into the Muskies' family. "Coach Varady, when he was still here, he actually came to me with the idea of having Dylan help with the team. He ate it up and loves it, and comes to the rink with a ton of passion and a love for what he does every single day."
Current Muskies coach Luke Strand says, "He might love the rink and the room more than some of our guys do. I think that spirit that he has-he's an uplifting guy that I think has the right mindset... every time he walks in the room-he's excited."
"They've taken me under their wing and made me a part of their family", says Dylan.
Having Dylan in his life has led Brady to get more involved in the Siouxland community, with events supporting Boys and Girls Home, and the Special Olympics.
Brady says, "Just being able to see it on a daily basis at my home every single day-seeing how simple making him laugh or connecting with him in a certain way can brighten up their day... I think it's important to do and having him is a big part of why I do it."
Dylan's presence has spread not just to Brady, but around the entire Muskies locker room.
First year Musketeer Dorian Dawson says, "He's always around-he's there every home game and he always puts a smile on all our faces. He's probably one of the most passionate guys we know."
Assistant captain Cole Koepke adds, "He just creates a whole other atmosphere in the locker room of excitement and energy, and we love having him around."
"I think he considers this team as a part of our own family", says Brady. "He considers these guys brothers-it's a really special relationship with the team."
Next year Brady will be moving to New York to play college hockey for Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he and Dylan's relationship will be tested by distance.
"It's going to be hard for me to leave, just because it's home", says Brady. "But for him, he's giving part of that up too-just getting to be able to share this experience with me."
Dylan's parting words for his big brother... "Brady, you've been a good big brother to me and... I'm going to miss you at college next year."