It’s a story right out of the movies. One story that the Pittsburgh Penguins celebrated Thursday night when they invited Jack Mook and his two adopted sons, Josh, 15, and Jessee, 11, to their game against the Los Angeles Kings for an experience like no other.
Pittsburgh police detective Jack Mook was acknowledged Thursday for his selfless act of adopting two young boys this past September.
Mook volunteers at Steel City Boxing, where he helps teach the sport to underprivileged youth. He met Josh and Jessee three years ago when they showed up to attend his lessons. The boys came from an abusive foster home, so Mook decided to take it upon himself to be a foster father himself and provide a better life for the children.
On September 16, Mook officially became the adopted father of the two boys, which has garnered national attention.
“The story is exploding right now and we like it because we are getting feedback that people are starting to get more into foster care across the country, so that’s awesome,” Mook said. “Every day to us – going through this whole experience with the Penguins, with everybody, with my gym – we’re just settling into who we are.”
And that’s a family.
Thursday night entailed more than just a trip to the Pens game for the trio of Mooks. They were given the opportunity to watch the game from one of CONSOL Energy Center’s suites, which was a surprise to both Josh and Jessee.
Something else the boys didn’t realize was that they were to about to be given customized Penguins jerseys with “Mook” on the nameplate as the number “14” emblazoned on the back to signify the year Jessee and Josh officially became Jack’s sons.
“What it means is pretty cool how they came up with that,” Josh Mook said. “(The jerseys) are pretty cool.”
Josh couldn’t catch his breath when he was asked how his experience at CONSOL Energy Center was before the puck dropped against the Los Angeles Kings.
“We had no idea this was happening,” Josh said. “We thought we were just coming to a Penguins game. I didn’t even catch on. The jerseys are awesome. Thank you to everyone. The seats are really awesome.”
For Jack, the night was made when he realized how excited and humbled his sons became when they realized what they were about to experience.
“It’s overwhelming,” he said. “From where the came from to this, they never had this. I could tell they’re short for words. Jessee’s shy, but he doesn’t even know how to explain what’s going on right now. This is pretty great for them.”