Milan twins show support at MSU
Without spending a day on the lake with the Milan family, you might not recognize the unique bond twins Cody and Devin share. Born April 11, 1996, the Milan twins have been inseparable since they came out of the womb.
Cody, a senior forward for Michigan State hockey, and Devin, a senior scrum-half for the Spartans’ women’s rugby team, grew up in White Lake, Michigan.
Their relationship is represented in the Gemini symbol etched onto Cody’s side and Devin’s back. This visual representation of their sibling-hood is something the twins display with pride, as its significance stretches beyond them sharing the same birthday.
“It’s a double meaning,” Devin said. “My mom is a Gemini … he’s kind of a mama’s boy and I am very close with my mom. So it’s meaningful to have her on my back and it’s also a symbol for twins.”
Whether competing in backyard games or attending the same school through eighth grade, the two were always in each other’s company.
“We’ve always been by each other’s side,” Cody said. “We used to play on the same hockey team for a few years and then she kinda got into riding horses and I stuck with hockey. But we’ve always been pretty close. We went to the same middle school.”
But as Cody went on to play at Saint Mary’s Preparatory School in Orchard Lake, Michigan, and eventually with the USHL’s Tri-City Storm in Kearney, Nebraska, the siblings deviated from their shared “similar path” for the first time in their young lives.
“That was a weird split,” Devin said. “To go all the way through kindergarten to eighth grade in the same school, going to lunch and seeing each other, having similar friends and then splitting freshman year. Then the last two years of high school, Cody lived out of state and I was still back home with my parents so he had to learn a little bit more independence, whereas I still had support from my mom and dad because I was still at home.”
Even through the split, Cody and Devin followed through on their longtime aspiration to go to college, as the two would eventually reunite in East Lansing. Having both their mother and grandmother graduate from MSU, Cody and Devin had a love of the university since childhood.
“It’s unbelievable because when you’re younger, you always dreamed about going to Michigan State and going to football games and hockey games and just going to school there,” Cody said. “It’s a thought that was pretty cool. Then you eventually get here and now I’m playing hockey and she’s going here and I think it’s just pretty special for us and the family.”
The twins capitalize on every opportunity to be together while at school, including attending each other’s games.
“I’m not much of a shouter, but I’m always most interested in the game when my brother goes out there,” Devin said. “The last home game on Friday against Ferris State when all the boys were lining up at center ice in a circle, I saw Cody out there tapping his stick and I shouted out, ‘I love you Cody!’ So it was cool to let him know that I came to support him.”
Devin discusses Cody’s personality affectionately.
“He’s a sweetheart because … he’s like a mama’s boy. He’s always been like super passionate and friendly. Yeah, he’s a sweetheart.”
Cody and Devin’s dynamic touches some of their other family members as well, including elder brother Daniel, a defenseman for the Reading Royals in Reading, Pennsylvania. He had an interesting perspective of the two growing up.
“It was a journey, just the fights that we would get into over whatever it was, whether it was fighting to play video games or competing in the driveway playing hockey,” Daniel said. “There was always somewhat of a competition but there was always a sense of family, and we always had each other’s backs.”