Big Bad Military-Appreciating Bruins

November is a month of recognizing how much people have to be thankful for. Within the month, people in the United States sit down to celebrate Thanksgiving Day on the fourth Thursday of the month. Before that though, there is November 11, in which the United States celebrates Veterans’ Day and Canada celebrates Remembrance Day. This is a day to honor those men and women who have served in the military to ensure the security of their countrymen–often putting their own lives at risk. Some who have served will not come back whole, but most, when asked, say they would do it again.

Many teams honor the military throughout the month of November, and the Boston Bruins, like other teams, honor at least one military person at every home game in the “Eight-Spoked Salute.” However, the November 11 game against the Tampa Bay Lightning is a dedication to those who have served and continue to serve.

This year, five Bruins players are donating $12,500 worth of tickets to soldiers. In support of the armed forces, Bruins players Matt Bartkowski, Johnny Boychuk, David Krejci, Torey Krug and Dennis Seidenberg will each purchase $2,500 worth of tickets to the Bruins/Lightning game which will be given to local military members and their families. In addition, the military members sitting in these player-donated seats will also have an opportunity to meet the players after the game.

As they have done in the past, the Bruins will don camouflaged Spoked-B jerseys during warm-ups (which will be auctioned off for charity after the game) and will also use camouflaged stick tape during the game.

Military Appreciation Has Always Been Strong

Ference (Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports)
Ference (Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports)

Throughout the years the connection between the military and the Bruins has been present. During the Bruins 2013 Cup run, the Bruins who were at the podium post game, during vitories, could be seen wearing an Army Rangers jacket. The jacket was given to defenseman Andrew Ference (now with the Edmonton Oilers) by Army Sgt. Lucas Carr.

Like the retro Bruins jacket that Ference found on Ebay and that became an icon of the Bruins’ Stanley Cup Championship-winning 2011 season, the Rangers jacket was awarded to a player on the team by the previous wearer after each victory.

When the Bruins lost in game six to the Chicago Blackhawks during the 2013 Stanley Cup final, there was a question as to what would become of the jacket. On Thursday, July 11, Ference answered that question when he tweeted a picture of the ultimate recipient.

Matt Brown is a Norwood High School hockey player who was paralyzed in 2010 from the neck down after suffering a spinal cord injury during a game.

And with that, things kind of went full circle, as Sgt. Carr, who gave the jacket to Ference originally, had pushed Brown in the 2012 Boston Marathon.

Bruins fans can get involved in the Military Appreciation Night through the team’s “Seats for Soldiers” program. Specially priced Lower Level ($125) and Upper Level ($75) tickets can be purchased by fans and donated to the Boston Bruins Foundation, who in turn will donate them to the USO New England. To purchase tickets for donation, please visit or call 617-624-1805.

And whether you are watching the Bruins at TD Garden or at home on Monday, please take a moment to thank those of the military. Their commitment to serve helps keep peace and safety for all.