|Red Wings forward Justin Abdelkader reads the oath of re-enlistment to Chief Petty Officer Aron Mazurek, of the U.S. Navy on Thursday. (Photo by Dan Mannes/Detroit Red Wings) |
Regardless of where he's been in the world, nothing has kept U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer Aron Mazurek away from the team that he has idolized since boyhood.
That’s what made Thursday’s re-enlistment ceremony at Joe Louis Arena so special for the Warren, Mich., native, who graduated from Lincoln High School in 1998.
Standing on a red carpet and about the precise spot on the ice where Karen Newman sings the National Anthem prior to each home game, Mazurek’s swearing in ceremony was officiated by Wings forward Justin Abdelkader
“This was amazing as I’ve been a lifelong Red Wings’ fan having grown up down the street,” said Muzurek, 32. “I used to come to a lot of the games and I’ve watched them in Spain, from Africa, and off the coast of Iraq on a ship.”
Abdelkader, who grew-up in Muskegon, Mich., and flew with the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels last July was delighted to administer the oath of re-enlistment to CPO Mazurek.
Abdelkader and goalie Jimmy Howard
are set to leave this Saturday for Finland where they will represent Team USA at the 2012 IIHF World Championship.
“My enlistment contract was up and I reenlisted for six more years in the Navy,” said Mazurek, who enlisted 14 years ago. “The world travel is my favorite and the stability that it provides in a struggling economy and the training on the most high-tech equipment that you can think of. It’s amazing.”
Mazurek and his family will remain in Michigan until mid-November when they will move to Virginia Beach, Va. Follow Bill Roose on Twitter | @Bill_Roose