By BOB OLIVER
DEARBORN — The Dearborn Firefighters hockey team is lacing up their skates to raise money in the fight against cancer.
During the “Hockey Fights Cancer Night,” the team will face off against the Western Wayne Fire Departments hockey team at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 9 at the Dearborn Ice Skating Center, 14900 Ford Road.
A monetary donation will be accepted for admission into the game.
Firefighter Mike Mattern said the money raised goes to the Josephine Ford Cancer Institute and the Be The Match national bone marrow donor registry.
“These are both great charities,” Mattern said. “I recently had a close family member treated at the JFCI and a recipient of a transplant through Be The Match, so I’ve seen first-hand just how much they do to help people.”
Mattern said the hockey game is just part of the festivities planned for the event.
When the doors open at 4 p.m., there will be a booth set up so attendees who would like to sign up and be placed on the national bone marrow registry can do so.
Mattern said to be placed on the registry, guests have to sign up and get a simple cheek swab, which is painless, only takes a couple minutes and could save a life.
“This more than just a hockey game,” Mattern said. “People legitimately have an opportunity to help save or positively change someone else’s life.”
There will also be a 50/50 raffle as well as raffle prizes that include multiple ticket packs to attend a Detroit Red Wings game against the Montreal Canadians, Detroit Pistons tickets with a VIP parking pass, signed pucks from Red Wings Henrick Zetterberg and Tomas Tatar and a signed, game-used stick from Tatar used against the New York Rangers on their Hockey Fights Cancer Night Oct. 23.
Mattern said the ticket packages and memorabilia are just a small part of the night.
“The real big event will be going on at the end of the second period, when all past and present cancer patients, survivors, and their families will be honored in a small ceremony just for them,” Mattern said.
He added that it’s important to recognize those who have had to fight against cancer and to support them in any way possible.
“The people who are current cancer patients and survivors are the real VIPs of this game and will be honored as they should be as they fight this disease day in and day out,” Mattern said. “They are really our heroes.”
Mattern said those who aren’t able to attend the event can donate by going to www.tinyurl.com/dearbornice.
Anyone will questions about the event is asked to contact Tarita Gibson at (313) 833-2624.
(Bob Oliver can be reached at [email protected])