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Panthers Give NY Firefighters Signed Hockey Stick

by Staff Writer / Florida Panthers

George Richards/Miami Herald

The fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks passed recently, and Olli Jokinen and the Panthers helped make sure the city's firefighters knew they had not been forgotten.

On Wednesday, team executive and radio analyst Randy Moller took a hockey stick signed by the entire team to New York Fire House 10, the first unit to deploy firefighters to the World Trade Center.

Station 10 lost five of its firefighters that day, and the building itself had to be renovated (it reopened in 2003) because of damage from the collapse of the towers.

'Honest to God, it's right across the street from Ground Zero,' Moller said.

The house is now home to the 9-11 Memorial Wall. Jokinen was approached by the South Florida media this season and coordinated the stick signing, making sure that it made it to the firehouse.

Because the Panthers were playing Wednesday, Moller took the stick downtown and was given a tour of the firehouse. He also was shown the vast array of memorabilia sent there by fire and police departments, as well as professional sports teams from around the world.

On Wednesday, the Panthers joined the ranks of those represented.

'They were overwhelmed that an out-of-town hockey club would be thinking of them,' Moller said.

'We told them how encouraged we were by the things they did and continue to do. The thing I think they were impressed was that they didn't put in a request for anything. We called them and touched base. Give credit to Olli.'

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