By David Yarger
Setting up a fundraiser for a cause is no easy task. To Jordan Fox, 18, setting up a scholarship in Joey Brochey's name was an absolute must. With the hard work of Fox, there will be a memorial hockey game from 3-5 p.m. Saturday at Hyde Park Ice Pavilion.
All proceeds from the game go to a brand-new scholarship, which honors Brochey: The Joey Brochey Memorial Scholarship.
The scholarship will be given to a North Tonawanda High School senior who plays hockey, demonstrates a humble and kind lifestyle and must meet certain standards in the classroom. On top of that, the recipient will write an essay describing what a humble and kind lifestyle means to them, and how hockey has impacted their life and shaped their future, all characteristics that define Brochey, Fox said.
"Joey lived a very humble and kind lifestyle. He seemed to be great at everything he tried and was usually successful with them on his first try. One thing Joey was great at was hockey. He played from the time he was small and carried his passion into his adult life. He never skipped a beat; no matter what he had going on, there was always time for hockey. The weekend he passed away was spent playing in a tournament when he wasn't working.
"Joey was a natural and avid outdoorsman. He spent countless hours hunting and fishing. It was through this passion that many of Joey's best friendships were created and strengthened. Joey and his buddies had a profound bond; they were a band of brothers. That was one thing about Joey, he was simple, easy going and a friend everyone loved to have; to know him was to love him. Joey was a genuine person who left a lasting impression on just about everyone he met. He had a contagious smile and a heart of gold," Fox said.
Brochey lost his life in April 2016, after a motorcycle accident. From then on, Fox said he looked for ways to honor Brochey and the idea came with a recent class project.
"This was something I've always wanted to do, but this year I received a project in a class at school that opened the door. I thought 'what other way to remember Joe in a positive way then bringing people together to do the thing he loved most,' play hockey.
"The problem was an event like this would cost some serous money. I began reaching out to rinks, officials and businesses to help sponsor the event. We asked these places to donate either money, ice time or officials and in exchange we offered brand awareness along with other things. I met with some guys who really wanted to help out and they began to sponsor or do whatever they could to help me out. From there, everything fell into place," Fox said.
When the game was set and the scholarship fund was a given, Fox, a cousin of Brochey, used the Thanksgiving holiday to surprise the family with what had been produced; a moment he won't forget.
"Originally my family began to record because they were under the impression I was going to do something funny, standing up at the dinner table like that. When I presented the news, that I've been keeping a secret for so long, the whole atmosphere of the room changed. The reaction of my family actually sent chills down my spine. After seeing their reactions, it gave me a huge boost of encouragement to really make sure this event is successful and something we can all cherish," Fox said.
Brochey and Fox's aunt, Regina Fox-Shiesley, expressed her pride and excitement on Facebook saying, "My talented nephew Jordan surprised us with a pre-Thanksgiving dinner speech; laying out all the details of a project he's been working on honoring Joe Brochey with a memorial hockey game and scholarship in his name. I couldn't be more proud of him."
Fox said he can't wait for the event and believes it'll be a special event that really honors Brochey's name.
"Having friends and family come together to play the sport he loved signifies Joey by including three huge factors of Joey's life; family, friends and hockey. In addition to the game, the scholarship. Awarding one student athlete with financial assistance for college will leave a lasting impression of Joey on the recipient which is what Joey did to everyone he met," Fox said.
The game will include players from the community, and close friends to Brochey. Along with the game, there will be a basket raffle, 50/50 raffle, and a T-shirt sale. Fox said the event is open to the public and he encouraged everyone to attend and support a great cause. For more information, or to donate, visit http://jbmemorialhockeygame.webs.com