Matt Harvey’s high school catcher is hometown hero himself

Brian McGugan (WTNH / Tina Detelj)

GROTON, Conn. (WTNH) — Neatly piled in Brian McGugan’s garage are a few olive green duffel bags.

Brian McGugan (WTNH / Tina Detelj)
Brian McGugan (WTNH / Tina Detelj)

“For the most part you know it’s just all the gear,” says McGugan who is getting ready to be deployed.

News8 first met him yesterday when he told us about his friend Mets pitcher Matt Harvey who is the Game 1 starter in the World Series.

Brian McGugan (WTNH / Tina Detelj)
Brian McGugan (WTNH / Tina Detelj)

McGugan was his catcher at Fitch Senior High School in Groton.

“Never denying one single person that I’ve seen of a picture or autograph none of that stuff,” said McGugan. “So really you’re picture perfect hometown hero.”

Well you know what – McGugan is a pretty perfect hometown hero himself.

“I’m a Staff Sargent E6 down at the Groton… it’s called the 1109th TASMG is our unit,” says McGugan. “We’re a helicopter repair/maintenance facility.”

This week he’ll be heading out on his first deployment.

“I work with a lot of guys who have done a whole lot more than I have so I don’t want to steal too much thunder from anyone else,” says McGugan. “It’s nice to be looked at that way and be looked up to in a way I guess for what we do and where we go.”

He and the other CT national guardsman are going to Afghanistan and Kuwait for 9 months. He’ll leave behind his eleven year old son Cameron.

“I call him Cam the man,” says McGugan enthusiastically. “He’s the man to me.”

Like his dad – Cam has a passion for hardball and now the Mets. They’ll get to watch game one together and see Harvey on the mound.

(WTNH/ Tina Detelj)
(WTNH/ Tina Detelj)

“I can’t imagine how busy he is right now,” says McGugan. “You think I’m busy he’s got to be crazy busy.”

But they have kept in touch this week. Both facing huge challenges and both making their hometown and families very proud.

That of course includes McGugan’s son who was among those at the official send-off ceremony at the Army Aviation Support Facility in Windsor Locks.

“Obviously it’s going to be tough to say goodbye but I think like I said he’s got to remain tough about it like I’m going to have to do. Hopefully.”

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