Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Jack Campbell Named Texas Stars Man of the Year

Jack Campbell (Credit: Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)
Second year goalie Jack Campbell has been named as the Texas Stars team winner of the IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year award for his "outstanding contributions to the greater Central Texas community" this season. Campbell will be one of the 30 team finalists competing for the AHL's Yanick Dupre Memorial Award, which will be announced later this month.

During his lengthy injury this season, Campbell dedicated himself both to recovery and to service. He leads the team in community appearances on the season.

My favorite story on the season is this one though:
"Campbell is a strong supporter of military service members and veterans, and frequently visits with military families before and after games. Among them was a family whose father was about to deploy. The son was upset about his father leaving, so Campbell went back to the locker room and gave the boy his personal lucky charm: Campbell's 'draft day' hat, given to him by the Dallas Stars on the day he was drafted by the organization."
Previous Texas winners of the award include Landon Wilson, Brad Lukowich (twice) and Toby Petersen.

Here's the release, which you should really read:
The Texas Stars are proud to announce that Jack Campbell has been named the team's winner of the IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year award for his outstanding contributions to the greater Central Texas community during the 2013-14 season.

Campbell, 22 and in his second full professional season with the Texas Stars, has shown incredible enthusiasm and dedication to the team's charitable efforts. Not only does he lead his teammates in community appearances this season, Campbell has gone above and beyond what anyone with the Texas Stars and Texas Stars Foundation has asked, donating his own time, money and even personal mementos in an effort to make days brighter for Stars fans, children and military families in Central Texas.

Campbell has been an invaluable supporter of the Texas Stars Foundation's fundraising efforts, helping to raise additional funds during live auctions by offering autographed items and opportunities to spend time with fans to increase bids. In November, Campbell took two fans to dinner as a thank you for bidding on his autographed shirt during Bowling with the Stars, an annual fundraising event for the Foundation. During Casino Night in January, Campbell helped raise an additional $1,500 by volunteering to assist in a Zamboni driving lesson package auctioned during the event.

However, Campbell's generosity extends beyond fundraising efforts. At his own request during his lengthy injury, Campbell scheduled visits to Dell Children's Hospital to spend time with patients and assist with their arts and crafts activities. As part of a pre-game routine, Campbell also met with a 3rd grade student with social anxiety to provide encouragement about school and life.

Campbell is a strong supporter of military service members and veterans, and frequently visits with military families before and after games. Among them was a family whose father was about to deploy. The son was upset about his father leaving, so Campbell went back to the locker room and gave the boy his personal lucky charm: Campbell's "draft day" hat, given to him by the Dallas Stars on the day he was drafted by the organization.

During appearances at local hospitals and elementary schools, Campbell became an instant favorite among the children. He ensured every child felt included, taking his time to meet them and their families, eager to assist in any way he could by playing games, signing autographs and reading stories to patients and students.

Campbell is now one of 30 finalists for the AHL's 2013-14 Yanick Dupre Memorial Award, honoring the overall IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year. The league award is named after the former Hershey Bears forward and AHL All-Star who died in 1997 following a 16-month battle with leukemia. The winner of the Yanick Dupre Memorial Award will be announced by the American Hockey League later this month.

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