One thing that really hit home with us this past Veterans Day weekend was the realization that all the folks we were honoring play such an enormous role in enabling and preserving our way of life. We can’t thank you enough. Helping local veterans has been a long-standing tradition for our family. Both my father and brother are veterans, and we have many more family members who have served or are still serving today. We truly mean it when we say our way of life would not be possible without them. We were so proud to show our support and say thank you through events like Veterans Day Open House at the Stahls Auto Museum and the hockey game, Power Play for Heroes.
We were especially honored to donate funds from this year’s Power Play for Heroes weekend to the Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs. We exceeded all fundraising expectations, so thank you to all who gave so generously at both events. For those of you not familiar with Guardian Angels, they are a fantastic nonprofit organization dedicated to raising, training and donating medial service dogs to veterans and first responders suffering from post-traumatic stress, traumatic brain injuries and other medical needs. We had the wonderful opportunity to get to know United States Marine Corps Sergeant Mike Ronan a little better. Mike is a recipient of a Guardian Angels Medical Service dog and attended both events with his dog Julie. His speech at the museum, as well as the one at the ice rink was very inspirational and heartfelt and brought tears to many eyes. It is truly remarkable to learn about and witness the changes that these loving animals can bring to a veteran’s life. Thank you also to Mary Lamparter for speaking and for helping to support Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs. Thank you also to John Lind from the Arsenal of Democracy for participating at both events and for leading everyone in a prayer at the museum.
We couldn’t hold these events without the help and support of many people at the GroupeSTAHL organization and our wonderful museum staff, docents and volunteers. Even if we haven’t mentioned you by name, please know that we are extremely grateful for all your hard work and dedication to the cause.
Here is a recap of the hockey game that took place on Sunday, written by Jan Starr who was gracious enough to step in and assume coaching duties at the last minute. Thank you for your excellent coverage Jan:
November 12th: The St. Clair Shores Civic Arena was packed with over 700 fans for the 3rd Annual Detroit Red Wings Alumni – Team Stahls’ hockey showdown. The game was part of Stahl’s “Power Play for Heroes Weekend” which started with an Open House at Stahls’ Automotive Museum on Saturday and concluded with the Wings / Stahls’ hockey game Sunday. Veteran’s weekend pre-game ceremonies included the introduction of four honored local Veterans, a Marine color guard, a beautiful rendition of the National Anthem by Katelynn Corll and Mary Stahl ceremonially dropping the puck with a flourish. Both teams wore hockey sweaters specially designed by Stahls’ for the game as Stahls’ Captains Dan Stahl and Paul Sabatini met with the Red Wings Joe Kocur and John Ogrodnick at center ice and game officials for last minute instructions. The game was underway at 12:43 and fast paced and scoreless for the first four minutes as both teams tested one another while Stahls’ Tyler Gulock and Wings George Bowman turned away early shots in goal. Stahls’ drew first blood on a slick wrister by Garth Kassner with assist to Mike Ronan. Mark Merola then made it 2 – 0 Stahls’ on a sweet long pass from Will Campbell. The Wings stormed back scoring the next four goals – Rolf Nilsen (Assists to John Ogrodnick, Craig Wolman), Joe Kocur (Assists to Nilsen, Loren Knauft), Sergie Kharin unassisted (The Kharin goal was hotly disputed whether or not it had actually gone in the goal.)and Ogrodnick unassisted taking the lead 4 – 2. Stahls’ Mike Ronan got Stahls’ back on the scoreboard as he whistled one in with an assist from Joe Burt making it 4 – 3 at intermission. Both teams switched goalies for the second half with Allen Gaglio between the pipes for Stahls’ and Gregg Malicke (A “real” Red Wings Alternate Goalie) for the Alumni. Stahls’ started the second half fast as Joe Burt jammed one in from Ed Irmen tying things up 4 – 4. From there on Wing’s goalie Malicke got the hot hand and stonewalled Stahls’ for the rest of the game while the Wings tacked on three goals – Chris Libbett from Kocur, Brent Fedyk from Eric Reitz and Knauft from Kocur to wrap up scoring and the game. Stahls’ kept threatening after the Wings 3 goal burst but too many shots hit the pipes.
For Stahls’ Captains Sabatini and Stahl kept up the pace all game and had the Wings on edge all game. In addition to the scorers Stahls’ got “yeoman” performance from Marc Callert, John Lind and Chris Jones on defense. Up front Scott Vallee, Mike Buto, Trevor Stahl, Kari Stahl Schives, Russ Corey and Garth Kassner worked the corners and never let the Wings goalies relax.
The entire “Power Play for Heroes” Weekend honored our nation’s veterans and those currently serving our country. All proceeds for the weekend will benefit Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs, an organization dedicated to raising, training and donating medical service dogs to veterans and first responders suffering from post-traumatic stress, traumatic brain injuries, physical injuries and other medical needs. The Stahl family matched all donations received throughout the weekend.