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Oil Kings aim to build awareness, increase donors ahead of WHL Suits Up to Promote Organ Donation

Andy Devlin

 

On Monday, the Edmonton Oil Kings helped spread awareness about the importance of organ donation – and signed up to become organ donors themselves – ahead of WHL Suits Up to Promote Organ Donation presented by RE/MAX, taking place this Friday, January 17 when the Oil Kings host the visiting Prince Albert Raiders at 7:00 PM MT at Rogers Place.

WHL Suits Up to Promote Organ Donation is a WHL-wide initiative taking place in all 17 Canadian markets, with the Oil Kings kicking off the campaign this week. It’s the third year for the initiative, which has raised upwards of $460,000 for the program’s main benefactor, the Kidney Foundation of Canada.

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A number of Oil Kings players visited West-End Registries in Edmonton to learn more about organ donation, and pledged to help fill the vast need for donors in our province, and across the country.

“We’re here to help launch the WHL Suits Up to Promote Organ Donation campaign,” said Flavia Robles, Executive Director of the Kidney Foundation, Northern Alberta & The Territories Branch.

“It’s about raising awareness, information and education about organ donation. Today, some of the Oil Kings players have actually registered to become organ donors, and you have no idea what that means [to those in need]. Today they are saving lives.

“One donor can save eight lives, and if someone is willing to be an organ and tissue donor, you can save up to 80 lives.”

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West-End Registries is just one of multiple brick and mortar locations in the city in which residents can sign up to become an organ donor, or the process can be done online. By visiting this location they met with Steve Cutting, Managing Partner of West-End Registries who has his own close connection to organ donation.

Cutting has kidney disease, and will require a transplant soon. He is currently going through extensive testing to confirm if he will be a suitable candidate for donation.

“We were very happy to be a part of the event today,” Cutting said. “It’s such a great cause, and I am so personally appreciative of the commitment the Oil Kings are making for organ donor awareness.”

Veteran forward Ethan McIndoe shared in the sentiment that signing up to become an organ donor takes very little time, but has the potential to make a life-changing impact on someone in need, as well as their loved ones.

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“Registering to become organ donor is a great cause, and it feels good to be a part of,” said McIndoe.

“Being here today helps to raise awareness and hopefully we’ll be able to get more people to become donors.

“I think it’s the right thing to do.”

The specialty jerseys the Oil Kings wore to West-End Registries will be worn and silent auctioned on the concourse of Rogers Place during their game this Friday with net proceeds of winning bids benefiting the local chapter of the Kidney Foundation.

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This year’s jerseys are inspired by the powder blue blazer and retro logo worn by Hockey Night in Canada broadcasters for nearly fifty years beginning in 1952 (when the program started) until 1998.

The jerseys also feature the words ‘The Logan Boulet Effect’ printed along the inside of the neckline to pay tribute to Logan Boulet. A member of the SJHL’s Humboldt Broncos, Boulet passed away in the tragic bus crash that claimed the lives of 16 people on April 6, 2018. He earned widespread, posthumous commendation for his decision to have previously signed his organ donation card, ensuring a selfless act that provided the gift of life to others while sparking a national movement for organ donation registration.

Tickets to the game on Friday, January 17 at 7:00 PM MT vs. the Prince Albert Raiders, starting at just $20, can be purchased here.

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