Pictured - Members of the HSWB All Stars and the Rockford Bear Minimum hockey teams after their charity game.
This past Saturday afternoon a charity hockey game was played at the BMO Harris Bank Centre in Rockford. Skaters from as far as Ontario came to help friends raise money to fight a deadly disease. The game was planned by a close knit group of friends who have been personally affected by Pancreatic Cancer. The Rockford IceHogs Charitable Foundation joined it’s forces with the Have a Skate with Bob Foundation to help raise money to help find a cure for this deadly disease.
Bob Klem, from Kansas, lost his wife Becky to Pancreatic Cancer in 1999, just 3 short months after diagnosis. In 2007 HSWB was founded after his daughter told him should put purple tape on his goalie stick to honor her. Bob has since worked tirelessly in his efforts to raise money to find a cure.
Bob is also a member of a very close group of Chicago Blackhawks fans who converse frequently in a on-line community, IndianHeadNation.com. Many members of that community are also Season Ticket Holders for the Blackhawks and see each other frequently at games and in their personal lives.
The IHN community lost one of their own this past summer to Pancreatic Cancer, Tom Jacobson. Tom fought PC for 2 years before passing away in June. The game Saturday was played in his memory. His daughter Nicole, skated in her very first game of hockey on Saturday to honor her father. Throughout the game, the video board displayed a endless visual into Becky’s and Tom’s lives.
The charity game was between the Have A Skate with Bob All Stars team and the Rockford Bear Minimum hockey club. As rumored, the All Stars’ roster had a ringer on it, former IceHogs player Oak Hewer. The final score wasn’t important, the Bears won 16-7 if anyone cared. The game itself, while not polished, was filled with laughter, played in the name of friendship and love. In the last few minutes of the 3rd frame, the All Stars emptied their bench onto the ice and were seen with big grins on their faces as they threw mock punches at each other in a line brawl within their own ranks.
A Silent Auction was held later that evening, while the IceHogs played against the Abbotsford Heat. A wide variety of auction items were donated by friends, family members, hockey players and teams. A raffle was also held for a team autographed IceHogs jersey. The tables and walls behind them were covered with priceless treasures waiting to be won by a lucky bidder. Fans attending the game could be seen through out the game crowding the tables placing their bids. At the end of the night, the auction & jersey raffle brought in over $4,200. Proceeds went to help the fight against Pancreatic Cancer.
For further information please visit http://www.firstgiving.com/skatewithbob .
Members of the All Stars staged a mock line brawl within their own ranks at the end of the game.