Over the past four years, I have had the pleasure of getting to know Garret Sparks and being fortunate enough to not only be his business associate but also to call him a close friend. The events that occurred in the online goalie forum were merely due to Garret defending a member of the group who suffers from a disability. Since the mid-2000s before his career even took off, Garret has been involved in online goalie communities. As his career took off he remained a part of them, including the one I have been involved in called GGSUnited. Garret would always take time out of his day to talk to other goalies both young and old about whatever they wanted to know from him. He treated everyone in the group with respect and did not let where he was in his career from thinking he was above others.
Garret, myself and a few other of our friends created a camp for these members to meet four years ago. He wanted to give back to the community in more ways than he already has. He always will put his reputation aside to share his love of hockey and goaltending with others. He is loved by so many goalies around the globe, it is a shame that this event was blown out of proportion.
It is important to take the time to say that this issue was simply Garret protecting someone who could not defend himself. Garret was so invested in helping this individual follow his dreams of becoming a goalie. Garret invested his time and efforts to stand up for this individual, showing that he cared deeply to the well being of someone who was being mistreated and standing up for what he believed in.
The GGSU nature has been one of playful words and harmless banter. It is what has created the atmosphere and community we have worked so hard to develop over the years. It has never been acceptable to make fun of an individual who cannot stand up for himself, nor will we allow it to happen.
While we do not condone some of the things posted, we would like to say that we completely support Garret's honest intentions and stand behind him and only apologize that this has snowballed into something much bigger than it needed to be.
On behalf of GGSU,
Legends Camp Director