Former Islander hockey greats will suit up and hit the ice in a charity match against the Kings Park/Commack Alumni Hockey to raise money and to remember a lost teammate.
The match, now in its second year benefits the Sarah Grace Foundation for Children with Cancer and the Frank J. Rizzo Memorial Scholarship Fund. Rizzo, a former player for the KPC Hockey Club was killed in a car accident in September of 2010, a day after he turned 30, according to KPC team captain Kevin Barattini, who organized the event. The event takes place 4:30 p.m. on April 15 at in Kings Park.
The all-star event will bring out hockey greats Clark Gillies, Bobby Nystrom, Benoit Hogue, Brian Mullen and honorary member Boomer Esiason.
"The excitement and butterflies is starting to get to me" said Barattini. Last year's event brought in more than $12,000, according to an Islander's spokesperson.
This year's ceremonial face off for the Sarah Grace Foundation will be done by Christian Jean-Pierre. Christian is a 9 year old boy who was diagnosed with Actute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.
"This little boy touched my heart, his fight, his passion for life,” said Barattini, who met Christian earlier this year.
They will also retire Frank Rizzo's jersey, No. 68.
"Nothing will be better then seeing my brother's jersey hanging up there," said Ryan Rizzo, brother of Frank.
A finalist from American Idol will perform the National Anthem on the Superior Rink ice as Sal Ferro, eight-time remodeler for ABC's Extreme Makeover Home Edition and CEO of Allure Home Improvements, conducts the opening ceremony Kings Park High School student, Alysson Gannon will sing God Bless America.
In case your keeping score, last year, but a game like this proves everyone is a winner.
Tickets for this event are $20 and are available online at www.kpchockey.com or at