Former NHLer Kennedy tells U.S. to speak up against child sex abuse [View all]
Canada's Sheldon Kennedy stepped into the American spotlight on Tuesday, the victim of a sexual predator making a Capitol Hill appearance to urge U.S. lawmakers to "empower" anyone who suspects children are being sexually abused.
Under the glare of television cameras and the din of snapping shutters, the former NHL player matter-of-factly told of the ordeal he suffered at the hands of a once-trusted hockey coach. His testimony came as America grapples with the Penn State college football scandal.
"In my case, my abuser was International Hockey Man of the Year," Kennedy told the U.S. Senate subcommittee on children and families, whose members include Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota.
"In Canada, that gave him almost God-like status. Sound familiar? The kids — and often their parents too — looked up to him as a hero. This was someone who could make their dreams come true and he used that trust to hurt them."