BOSTON - Boston Bruins President Cam Neely announced today, July 31, that the team will honor Rick Middleton by retiring his number 16 jersey prior to the team's game against the New York Islanders on Thursday, November 29.
"It was a great honor to call Rick today and let him know that he will join the group of retired numbers in the TD Garden rafters," said Bruins President Cam Neely. "As a player and a person Rick embodies what it means to be a Bruin, and we are excited to celebrate his career with his family, friends and our fans on November 29th."
"Mr. Middleton's number 16 has long deserved to be raised to TD Garden's rafters," said Bruins CEO Charlie Jacobs. "I look forward to participating in the events on November 29th as it will be a very special evening for Mr. Middleton and the entire Bruins organization."
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"Bob Beers and I had a great trip to Virginia Beach in support of the Navy Seal Foundation Hockey Program. We played two games with active and retired servicemen and their sons, daughters and wives and were awestruck with their love of hockey and what an important part hockey plays in their unique community.
I want to thank everyone who donated hockey equipment or wrote a check to the Navy Seal Foundation. These guys are some of the most humble and down to earth people you’ll ever meet and they were thrilled the Boston Bruins Alumni have taken an interest in helping their cause. Special thanks to friend of the Alumni Tony Cabana from Cross Insurance for making us aware of the program and coordinating our visit. Tony has been involved with the Foundation for over 2 years and he’s brought much needed attention to their program. The goal is to raise enough funds to a facility adjacent to the rink to build adequate locker rooms, storage and skate sharpening areas.
Beyond hockey we were treated to a behind the scenes tour of the various compounds used for training. These guys train hard, really hard, at all aspects of their craft and are elite athletes in every sense of the word. I’m happy to have them on our team.
We’ll be making a future visits to Virginia Beach with hopefully a few more Alumni in tow. We’d like to run a couple of clinics for the 100+ kids in the Virginia Beach Hockey Club; most of which are children of Navy, Army, Air Force, Marine and Coast Guard servicemen and women. If the stars align properly we may even have full fledged Alumni vs. NS Foundation hockey game down the road."
Hockey has become a major tool for Seals, their families and Support Staff to:
-Re-acclimate after deployments lasting 6 or more months
-Help those suffering with PTSD re-engage in a team activity
-Mentor sons and daughters of deployed parents by off-rotation Seal team members respectful & knowledgeable of how difficult deployment is on children
-Participate in sled hockey leagues for those who’ve lost use of their legs
-Maintain general strength, fitness and competitiveness
Please take a minute to view this video of the importance of hockey in the Navy Seal community https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0IQbRXgITE&app=desktop
The Navy Seal Foundation Hockey Program has raised $20,000 of the $70,000 needed to build their new support facility. The Seals and their families give so much and as far as I can tell ask very little in return. I ask that you consider making a donation, however small, to support this cause.
Donations can be made here https://www.navysealfoundation.org/donate Click the “Donate Online Now” icon then select NSF Hockey Program from the “Designation” drop down menu.
The Navy Seal Hockey Foundation Hockey Program is also accepting donations of new and lightly used youth and adult hockey equipment, sticks and supplies.