While establishing himself as the Detroit Red Wings number one goalie, and as an NHL All-Star, Ogdensburgs Jimmy Howard has become a team leader in terms of community service.
Recently he provided a great service Ogdensburg youngsters and to the Ogdensburg Minor Hockey Association, which was the starting point to a career which has seen him compete very successfully at the highest level at the collegiate and professional ranks.
When contacted by lifelong friend Jon Shaver, Howard immediately agreed to purchase new uniforms for every player in the Ogdensburg Minor Hockey Association.
It is very important to give back to the community and to people who have supported me, said Howard while signing autographs after posing for a picture with a group of OMHA players in front the Richard Lockwood Community Arena which houses the Jimmy Howard Rink.
I really didnt have to do much. Just one make one phone call. The jerseys look great. They have the old style Maple Leaf emblem which I like.
The jerseys were designed by Ogdensburgs JP Manke who works as a graphic artist-designer for SUNY Potsdam.
It was just great to meet Jimmie Howard, I couldnt sleep last night just thinking about it, said OMHA Player Drew Costello.
I would like to try playing goal someday but right now my dad wants me to learn the entire game of hockey. So that is what I am doing.
Howard met the young players and their parents shortly after arriving in the city for a weekend visit from his home in Minnesota where he is enjoying the summer months after a whirlwind finish to the 2011-12 season where he played for Team USA in the World Championships after the Red Wings were eliminated from the NHL playoffs.
Howard, who will begin the second year of a two-year contract with the Red Wings in the upcoming season, is excited about the prospects of Red Wings if two major goals can be accomplished.
If the Wings can avoid the large-scale rash of injuries which hindered them last season and if the NHL players and owners can come to terms on a collective bargaining agreement.
I have been working hard all summer with a trainer at the University of Minnesota and I feel great. The camps are scheduled to open in September but nothing will happen without the collective bargaining agreement, said Howard.
Like everyone else I am hoping that it will get done.