Local Hockey Club Raises More Than $9,500 in Honor of Hockey Fights Cancer
The Prince William Hockey Club recently added shades of pink to their puckhandling to raise more than $9,500 in conjunction with Hockey Fights Cancer, a joint initiative between the NHL and the NHL Players’ Association devoted to increasing awareness of the disease.
Based in Dale City, Va., the club participated in Hockey Fights Cancer in honor of breast cancer research and displayed their support of the cause throughout October by incorporating the color pink into their ice time. Pink is the official color of breast cancer awareness.
The midget under 18 upper A boys team, which contributed more than $6,300 to the donation total, wore pink jerseys with the breast cancer logo affixed to the sweater during all of the month’s games. Other programs in the Prince William club supported the initiative in ways ranging from accenting their skates with pink laces to wrapping their sticks with pink tape.
In the three years the club has participated in Hockey Fights Cancer, it has raised more than $18,000 for the cause. The funds, collected by word of mouth from family and friends, are donated directly to the local Vienna, Va., branch of the American Cancer Society.
“It’s kind of become, ‘If you’re going to play with us, it’s about more than hockey,’” said Jim Fullem, U18 head coach and director of ice travel programs. “It’s about life and giving back and doing something for your community.”
U18 player Timothy Bussard said participating in Hockey Fights Cancer and learning more about the disease and the number of people it touches motivated the club during its fundraising.
“Everybody knows somebody who’s been affected by it, and I think everyone should try to make a difference,” said Bussard, who raised more than $1,400. “It really meant a lot to us to have people supportive of a cause we feel strongly about.”
Fullem said the Washington Capitals’ support of Hockey Fights Cancer, including the team’s Hockey Fights Cancer Night during the Oct. 22 game against the Detroit Red Wings, also encouraged the Prince William Panthers.
“Everyone has been touched by cancer in some way,” said Fullem. “I think when you have the NHL promoting this, getting the kids involved allows them to be part of something bigger.”
Fullem said the club, which participates in the Chesapeake Bay Hockey League, plans to endorse Hockey Fights Cancer in future seasons. The U18 team also does not limit wearing its pink jersey to October. Instead, the Panthers occasionally dress in the sweater for games throughout the season to continue increasing awareness.
For more information about the Prince William Hockey Club, visit http://www.pwhockey.com/.