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Published: 12/25/2011 - Updated: 2 years ago

Fund-raiser for Cannon at Huntington Center

BY MARK MONROE
BLADE SPORTS WRITER
Former Clay High School hockey player Kyle Cannon, who was paralyzed while competing in 2008. Former Clay High School hockey player Kyle Cannon, who was paralyzed while competing in 2008.
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A day-long hockey event on Monday at the Huntington Center will raise money support a former hockey player at Clay High School who was paralyzed during a hockey game in 2008.

The Toledo Walleye organization will host the Holiday HockeyFest to support senior Kyle Cannon, who suffered the devastating injury as a 14-year-old freshman and remains confined to a wheelchair.

The event consists of six hockey games, including contests between eight high school teams and four youth teams to raise money for Cannon.

This is the third season the Walleye have helped organize the event.

"The hockey world is a very small one," Walleye coach Nick Vitucci said. "If we have someone who is in trouble or in need, the hockey world takes care of their own. Whatever we can do to make it a little better for him, we're more than willing to do it."

The HockeyFest starts at 10 a.m. and will feature the following high school games: Ottawa Hills versus Lake, Springfield against Eastwood, Anthony Wayne versus Maumee, and Clay against Perrysburg. The cost is $15 per ticket and is good for all four games.

Michael Keedy, the Walleye's manager of special events, said fans that purchase a ticket to the event will also receive a voucher that can be redeemed for a ticket to any 2011-12 Walleye game.

"It's really nice that they keep having this even though it happened three years ago," Cannon said. "It still doesn't seem like it has been that long for me. It's nice that everyone supports it. It's like they'll never forgot it."

The event has grown from two teams in 2009 to six teams last year and eight this year.

In 2009, nearly $25,000 was raised and drew a record crowd of 4,020 tickets sold for a game between Clay and Anthony Wayne. Last year nearly $10,000 was raised.

The option to donate to the event and receive a ticket to a Walleye game also appeals to many fans, according to Keedy. Tickets can be purchased at toledowalleye.com/hockeyfest. For more information call 419-725-9255.

"It's a great event," Vitucci said. "I'm sure the great hockey fans of Toledo will support it."



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