Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Blues Give Youngster a Big Lift

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Blues Give Youngster a Big Lift

Article excerpt

The Blues came up big twice on Thanksgiving well before they played the Vancouver Canucks at Kiel Center.

First, winger Tony Twist and his teammates donated $2,400 to the St. Louis Backstoppers, who support families of local police and firefighters killed on duty.

Twist, whose father spent more than 30 years as a police officer in Canada, attended the annual Budweiser Metro Boxing Showdown Wednesday night at Kiel. The event benefits the Backstoppers.

Twist wrote the check on behalf of the 24 Blues players, who will kick in $100 each.

Having opened their checkbooks, the Blues then opened their hearts and their dressing room to Vincent Herbert.

Herbert, 7, was supposed to attend his first Blues game Thursday night.

But last weekend, his mother, Kathleen Provo Herbert, was killed in a car accident.

Jim Maier, a St. Louis police officer who serves as the National Hockey League's local security officer at Kiel, called Blues sales director Bruce Affleck. "The mother was a juvenile officer for St. Charles County courts,' said Maier, explaining why he took a personal interest.

Affleck immediately called Vincent's grandparents - the boy's father was estranged from the family - to set up a day with the Blues.

Maier ferried the boy to Kiel Thursday morning after a tour of a city police station. Coach Mike Keenan invited Vincent into the Blues' dressing room for the video scouting report on the Canucks.

Vincent then watched the brief game-day practice from the bench.

"Who's the one who stops all the shots?" Vincent asked.

That would be goalie Grant Fuhr.

"He's a great goalie," said Vincent, who has just begun a career as a defenseman in youth hockey. "They barely score off him."

When asked which other players he wanted to meet, Vincent said: "Brett Hull. I wanted to get his autograph."

He did, on a Blues cap and on one of Hull's sticks. …

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