(FREDERICTON, NB) It may just be a single night, but to the members of the UNB Varsity Reds, it means so much.
“We wouldn’t be able to live how we live without them,” says Cameron Critchlow, captain of the Varsity Reds hockey team.
The “them” Critchlow refers to is the members of the Canadian Forces. “It takes a lot of courage and patriotism to serve your country and recognizing that is important.”
This Friday, the Varsity Reds hold their second annual Military Appreciation Night, when they host the Saint Mary’s Huskies, at 7:00PM, at the Aitken University Centre.
“Our program is proud to honour our Canadian military,” says Varsity Reds head coach Gardiner MacDougall. “This is one evening where we can recognize these special people for what they do for our country.”
MacDougall acknowledges members of the military and their families make huge sacrifices. “They work 365 days a year to ensure peace and harmony.”
Critchlow remembers last year’s game and meeting some soldiers and their families after. “We had a big group photo after and got to meet a few of them. It gave us a sense that they were real people, like you and me.”
Critchlow believes people will come to the game specifically to show their support for the military and their families.
Friday’s event will include equipment displays and a special pre-game ceremony featuring a military colour guard.
The Varsity Reds will, once again this year, wear custom-designed jerseys for Friday’s game.
The red and black camouflage pattern was designed by Eric Drummie and David Kilfoil, long-time volunteers with the hockey program.
Following Friday’s game, the jerseys will be available for purchase by fans and supporters.