Microsoft worker balances secret identity as Hawks' feathered friend

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by ELISA HAHN / KING 5 News

KREM.com

Posted on January 16, 2014 at 9:02 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 21 at 2:36 PM

Stopping by his office, you might think Ryan Asdourian looks like your typical Microsoft employee.

As a senior executive communications manager, he gets to tinker with the latest hardware in the Windows world. He pointed to some of them on his desk.

"Surface device, Samsung PC. This is the Lenova Yoga," said Asdourian. "It's pretty unique and pretty versatile."

You might say the same thing about the 32 year old himself, once you pick up on the subtle hints in his office of his dual identity.  It's an identity with college roots.

"When I was in college, I was actually the mascot for the University of Florida, Albert the Alligator," said Asdourian. "You know... I came out started working for Microsoft, and missed the adrenaline rush of being out on the field."

It didn't take long for him to find that rush again, in some blue feathers, with the Seahawks and Century Link field.

"It's so loud and so exciting," he said smiling. "There's nothing like it."

Asdourian won't come straight out and admit he's the silent man behind the mask. He even talks about the Seahawks mascot, Blitz, in the third person, perhaps protecting the mascot's persona.

"I am quite excited, as Blitz is," he said.

But the one thing he's quite open about, is a cause near and dear to his heart that he discovered 5 years ago.

"I was having some tingling sensations in my body," Asdourian remembers. "I wasn't sure what was wrong, but I knew something was wrong."

After some tests, doctors told him the bad news.

"They let me know hey you've been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis."

With the same relentless high energy that Blitz has on the field, Asdourian has decided to help defeat the disease through fundraising. Even getting NFL mascots to take part in Seattle's MS walk two years ago.

"We've been able to raise over 300,000 dollars for the MS Society, which is just great to see the community get behind an effort like that," he said.

Asdourian founded the Team Blitz Pub Crawl to raise money for the cause, and takes part in the annual Walk MS in Seattle every year. Both events are in April.

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