ARLINGTON, Va. - The Washington Capitals hosted #CapsFightCancer Night supported by global sciences and technology company Leidos during the game against the Florida Panthers on Saturday, Nov. 5, with several initiatives surrounding the evening.
#CapsFightCancer Night is a part of Hockey Fights Cancer, a league-wide initiative founded by the NHL and NHL Players' Association and is dedicated to raising awareness for national and local organizations involved in cancer care and research.
As part of the team's Hockey Fights Cancer campaign, each Capitals player, head coach Barry Trotz and owner Ted Leonsis was paired with a Make-A-Wish® Mid-Atlantic participant who is currently battling cancer or is in remission. Video testimonials featuring players, Trotz and Leonsis reading the biographies of their Make-A-Wish® Mid-Atlantic local wish kid partner and posting their images on a Capitals Hockey Fights Cancer board were released daily on WashingtonCaps.com/CapsFightCancer through Nov. 5.
During warmups on Nov. 5, players wore lavender Capitals jerseys with the nameplate of their Make-A-Wish® Mid-Atlantic child.
Children from Make-A-Wish® Mid-Atlantic participated in various in-game activities, including Olympia rides, the flag tunnel, T-shirt toss, intermission game and a ceremonial puck drop. 17-year-old Severn, Md., native and local wish kid Peter Jauschnegg participated in the puck drop with Capitals alumnus John Druce. Peter is currently in remission, having beaten two types of cancer - Ewing's Sarcoma and leukemia. Druce lost his daughter Courtney to cancer in April 2016.
Following the game, the Make-A-Wish® Mid Atlantic participants visited the Capitals locker room to meet with players, take photos and get autographs.
Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation raised $63,955 for Flashes of Hope, Hope for Henry, Make-A-Wish® Mid-Atlantic and Pancreatic Cancer Action Network through a Hockey Fights Cancer auction. Leidos donated an additional $40,000. Combined with proceeds from the evening's 50/50 raffle, warm-up puck sales, Ellie's Hats donations and the sale of Hockey Fights Cancer pins, a total of $125,605 was raised for the charities.
The MSE Foundation auction featured Hockey Fights Cancer jerseys, sticks, pucks and hats. Player-used sticks with lavender tape, pucks featuring a lavender Capitals logo and autographed Hockey Fights Cancer hats and ties rounded out the auction. A loose nameplate with the player's name was included with each jersey.
Four jerseys sold for more than $3,000, with forward Nicklas Backstrom's jersey selling for the most at $3,500. In addition Braden Holtby's autographed goalie stick and a team autographed framed puck set each sold for $3,050.
Lavender is the official color the NHL's Hockey Fights Cancer campaign, as it represents all forms of cancer.
In addition Ellie's Hats hosted a hat drive during the game, collecting more than 450 hats. Ellie's Hats is a local organization that collects new hats to donate to kids who are battling cancer and going through chemotherapy treatments. For more information visit www.ellieshats.org.
About Hockey Fights Cancer
Hockey Fights Cancer is an initiative founded in December 1998 by the National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players' Association to raise money and awareness for hockey's most important fight. To date, through the NHL's U.S. and Canadian charitable foundations, more than $16 million has been raised under the Hockey Fights Cancer initiative to support national and local cancer research institutions, children's hospitals, player charities and local cancer organizations. The Hockey Fights Cancer program is also a component of the NHL's "Biggest Assist Happens Off the Ice" campaign - the League's long-standing tradition of addressing important social issues in North America and around the world.
The Hockey Fights Cancer program is supported by NHL Member Clubs, NHL Alumni, the NHL Officials' Association, Professional Hockey Trainers and Equipment Managers, corporate marketing partners, broadcast partners and fans throughout North America.
About Flashes of Hope
Flashes of Hope is a nonprofit organization that raises money for pediatric cancer research and changes the way children with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses see themselves through the gift of photography. The goal of Flashes of Hope is to photograph every child until every child is cured. MSE Foundation and the Capitals established the D.C. chapter of Flashes of Hope at Children's National, and also support the Northern Virginia chapter based at Inova Fairfax Hospital for Children and the Children's Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders.
About Hope for Henry
Hope for Henry is reinventing how hospitals care for seriously ill children and their families through innovative programs that entertain, reduce stress and empower children to be active participants in their own care. Since 2003, Hope for Henry has improved the lives of more than 16,000 kids and families at Children's National, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, Sinai Hospital of Baltimore and other hospitals around the country.
Leidos is a global science and technology solutions leader working to solve the world's toughest challenges in the defense, intelligence, homeland security, civil, and health markets. The company's 33,000 employees support vital missions for government and commercial customers. Headquartered in Reston, Virginia, Leidos reported pro forma annual revenues of approximately $10 billion for the fiscal year ended January 1, 2016 after giving effect to the recently completed combination of Leidos with Lockheed Martin's Information Systems & Global Solutions business (IS&GS). For more information, visit www.Leidos.com.
About Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic®
Make-A-Wish grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic serves children who reside in central and southern Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland and Northern Virginia. Founded in 1983, the organization has granted more than 8,800 wishes in the Mid-Atlantic region since its inception. This year alone, 840 local children are expected to be diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition. However, for every wish granted, at least two more local children are waiting. The community has the opportunity to make an impact today by helping Make-A-Wish to reach hundreds of kids whose wishes would go otherwise go unanswered this year. For more information, please visit: www.midatlantic.wish.org.
About Pancreatic Cancer Action Network
The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is the national organization creating hope in a comprehensive way through research, patient support, community outreach and advocacy for a cure. The organization is leading the way to increase survival for people diagnosed with this devastating disease through a bold initiative - The Vision of Progress: Double Pancreatic Cancer Survival by 2020. To continue to accelerate progress, a goal to raise $200 million by 2020 is also in place. Together, we can Wage Hope and rewrite the future of pancreatic cancer.