When Dustin Brown finally learned when he’d spend his official day with the Stanley Cup, his first thought wasn’t about how he’d like to party with it at local bars.
His first thought was about family.
Christopher Bordoni, the cousin of Dustin’s wife, Nicole, was critically wounded during an attack by a suicide bomber in Afghanistan in January and died from his injuries 10 weeks later in San Antonio. At the time of the attack, Brown was on an off-day preparing for his Los Angeles Kings to play host to the Calgary Flames the following night.
“The whole community rallied around the Bordoni family at that time,” Brown said. “When we talked about doing a public event, the first thing me and my wife thought — we always do a lot of charity stuff — we had Semper Fi right at the top of the list. It was a good fit.”
Semper Fi is short for The Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund, a nonprofit set up to provide immediate financial support for injured and critically ill members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families.
The first order of business for the Kings captain Saturday morning was a three-hour photo session at the Ithaca High School football field. About 1,000 people showed for the event, some of whom arrived as early as 4 a.m. to get a spot at the front of the line for the 9 a.m. start.
Brown didn’t charge for the photo opportunity, but he made one request: Help out if you can.
Donations were requested from anyone taking a photo, and raffle tickets were sold for a chance to win a miniature replica Stanley Cup and a personal photo with Brown at $5 apiece and $20 for five tickets.
The rain-soaked attendees donated $12,176 to the cause, a total that doesn’t include private donations given to Brown by the Ithaca Police and Fire Departments later in the day.
Source: Dave Lozo for NHL.com.