K-Wings raise $23K for shooting spree victims, families

Saturday marked two weeks since six people were shot, killed in the Kalamazoo area

The K-Wings sold "We are Kalamazoo" shirts to raise money for the victims of the Kalamazoo-area shooting spree. (March 5, 2016)


KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) – Two weeks after six people were killed and two others badly hurt in the Kalamazoo shooting rampage, a local minor league hockey team stepped up to help the victims and their families.

The matchup Saturday was the K-Wings’ first home game since the Feb. 20 shooting spree. The ice was decorated with powerful messages of prayers and hope for the “We are Kalamazoo” game to benefit the victims.

Top, left to right: Dorothy Brown, Barbara Hawthorne and Mary Jo Nye. Bottom, left to right: Mary Lou Nye, Rich Smith and Tyler Smith.
Top, left to right: Dorothy Brown, Barbara Hawthorne and Mary Jo Nye. Bottom, left to right: Mary Lou Nye, Rich Smith and Tyler Smith.

$2 from each ticket sold to the game went to the Help Now! Fund for the victims and their families.

The team also auctioned off more than 60 items donated from the hockey community, local businesses and organizations. Among the items were signed jerseys from current Detroit Red Wing Danny DeKeyser and former Red Wing Nicklas Lidstrom. 100 percent of the money raised in the auction will go to the victims’ fund.

Additionally, the pro shop at the Wings Event Center sold “We Are Kalamazoo” shirts. Rob Comstock bought one of them.

“I want to help the families as much as I can and so it was a great pleasure to buy a shirt,” he said.

Fifty percent of shirt sales went to the fund, and concessions also donated its first $1,000 in sales.

The K-Wings set a goal of raising $20,000 for the fund and beat it by thousands, raising $23,066.

Fans in attendance also received ‘We Are Kalamazoo’ signs and stickers.

“I had the opportunity to speak with some of the families that are here tonight, victims’ families, and they are so grateful to everyone in this community for coming together to help support them,” K-Wings director of sales Toni Daniels said

All proceeds from the March 17 St. Patrick’s Day jerseys will go to the Help Now! Fund, as well.

As for the game itself, the K-Wings beat the Utah Grizzlies 5-4 in overtime.

Inside WOODTV.com:

#KalamazooStrong: How you can help

Complete coverage of the Kalamazoo shooting rampage

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