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THANK YOU, ISLANDER FANS -- by Mike Milbury

by Staff Writer / New York Islanders
More than $85,000 raised last night and to be matched by Charles Wang for Katrina relief efforts

Oh, what a night.

On a gorgeous September evening, more than 250 Islanders fans and friends gathered at the Westbury Manor to raise funds for two worthy causes.

We set our goals high. Incredibly, we exceeded them.

$85,000 was raised over a very memorable three hours.

Thank you, Stan Pesner and Paul Packer, who ran the event and made sure so many of their loyal, compassionate and giving friends attended and contributed.

Thank you, Charles Wang, who stepped up and matched the $85,000 raised for the youth hockey programs in China and will send it to the relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina.

Thanks also go to Islanders ace salesman Steve Beisel, who put so much effort into making the night a special one. Also to my hockey staff, including Joanne Holewa and Kerry Gwydir, who took on the work when so much else is going on. Thank you to our Finance staff and everyone else in the Islanders organization who contributed their time.

Thank you, Deb Kaufman and John Wiedeman, for being perfect hosts.

None of us involved in the event ever dreamed we could reach such a lofty goal but the people of Long Island made it happen.  The fact is, everyone at the event dug deep and I personally appreciate it more than you will ever know. I have no doubt I will miss someone, but I would be remiss in thanking Alan Breeker, Jonathan Evans, Jeff Gonzalez, Timothy McNicholas, Thomas Parkes, Warren Sackman and Nicholas Valastro, who were some of the people who went above and beyond.

Thank you, everyone.

Mike
September 8

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