|Blues forward Keith Tkachuk delivers full season tickets to Betty Keough on Oct. 1.
While he’s not likely to quit his job in the NHL for a position at the local post office, Keith Tkachuk did a fine job acting as a mail carrier on Monday morning.
As part of a Blues initiative to get players out into the community, Tkachuk showed up to a quiet neighborhood in Carondelet with three boxes of Blues season ticket packages. He wasn’t driving a white mail truck or wearing post-office blue, but he made sure the packages safely reached their destination on time.
Norma and Betty Keough, along with their friend Yvonne Roques, have never been so happy to receive their mail.
“With Keith delivering our tickets, it was fun having a player do that,” Yvonne said.
Tkachuk parked across the street and was walking up the driveway when the three women returned home. Earlier in the morning, they attended the annual Blues breakfast at the Missouri Athletic Club.
With a 15-year career that has included stints in Winnipeg, Phoenix and Atlanta, personally delivering season tickets was a first for Tkachuk.
“It was fun, it was great,” he said afterwards. “Since the lockout, we obviously haven’t played particularly well. I think with the ownership change coming in, we’ve done a lot of good things. We expect to win and we expect to do a lot of things like this. That’s just part of it.”
Betty and Norma are sisters, but they do everything with their close friend Yvonne, who lives just down the street. The three of them have been Blues season ticket holders since the team’s inception in 1967. They were there when Doug Wickenheiser scored in overtime for the Monday Night Miracle at the St. Louis Arena in 1986, and they were in the building cheering when the Blues clinched the President’s Trophy with the league’s best regular season record in 2000.
Add Monday’s surprise delivery from Tkachuk as one more item on the long list of Blues memories throughout the years.
“We love hockey, that’s the one thing,” Norma said. “If we’re out of town and there’s a hockey game, we’ll go to it. It doesn’t have to be the Blues. (In 1967), the Blues were the only hockey team in town.”
Since originally purchasing their tickets in 1967, the three rarely miss a game. And if Monday’s ticket deliveries are any indication, there are a lot of Blues fans just like them.
Blues players delivered season tickets all throughout the St. Louis area, making stops at local homes and businesses throughout the morning. Players making deliveries included Doug Weight, Paul Kariya, Lee Stempniak, Erik Johnson, Jamal Mayers, Manny Legace and others. All in all, the Blues made deliveries at 14 different locations.
Despite attending nearly every game, hockey never seems to get old for Yvonne, Norma and Betty. They’re excited for this season and can’t wait for the puck to drop on the home opener on Oct. 10.
“I think they’ll do pretty decent,” Yvonne said of the 2007-08 team. “I think Andy Murray is a good coach for them. I think he expects quite a bit out of them.”
And while he couldn’t make any guarantees, Tkachuk said he’s hoping the team will be 2-0 by the time Betty, Norma and Yvonne show up for the home opener at Scottrade Center.
“These people have been season ticket holders for a long, long time,” Tkachuk said. “I think that just tells you about the kind of people that care about sports in St. Louis.”