Birmingham Bulls visit veterans

Published 1:29 pm Monday, February 27, 2023

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By LIZZIE BOWEN | Staff Writer

PELHAM – The Birmingham Bulls paid a very special visit to veterans at the Birmingham VA Medical Center.

Communications Director, David Koonce, said the players were very excited to be able to go to the VA and meet the veterans.

“We have a special group of guys this year,” Koonce said. “They truly love the community and are eager to do what they can to support it.”

Koonce said the veterans at VA Medical Center were surprised to get a visit from the team, but even more surprised when the players asked them for their autographs.

“The players brought a hockey stick for each veteran they met to sign,” Koonce said.

The signed hockey sticks will be displayed at the rink in the  Pelham Civic Complex and Ice Arena.

“We have a lot of community relations type events,” Koonce said. “Not all get press, but that is not what it is about for us. Our organization has a huge appreciation for the support that we are given. We make it a point to go out to schools, hospitals, etc. to give back that appreciation wherever we can.”

Koonce said a moment of the visit that stood out to him was seeing how happy it made everyone that the team came out to check on them when things in their lives don’t see to be going well.

“This goes beyond hockey,” Koonce said. “It’s something that these young men who play for this team really wanted to do to share some joy to others.”

This is the Bulls first visit to VA Medical Center, but several visits have been made to Children’s Hospital over the years. Koonce said these types of visits will be something the Bulls will continue to do.

“It’s always great for the community to see or hear about the things the Bulls do that contribute to (the) city and surrounding areas,” Koonce said. “As an organization we like the fans to know that we are all in this together winning on and off the ice.”

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