Father-son hockey connection fuels fundraising passion
SPONSORED BY THE ALZHEIMER SOCIETY OF ALBERTA AND NORTHWEST TERRITORIES
Many people believe in giving back—offering their time and effort with family or work colleagues to charitable causes through fundraising or events. It’s no different for Dan Bruinooge who, in a decade-long career at Servus Credit Union as chief people and corporate services officer, has been presented with numerous opportunities to lend support.
But there’s one event close to Bruinooge’s heart: the annual Alzheimer’s Face Off Hockey Tournament.
It’s not just because he gets a chance to play hockey with NHL alumni (a dream for most every prairie boy like him, he says), Bruinooge lost his father, Dan Sr., to dementia nearly 10 years ago.
As one of the leaders of the Servus Ringers team— employees of all ages and skill levels—Bruinooge says the tournament is a way to raise funds and awareness for Alzheimer’s Disease, and a way to honour his dad’s memory.
“My dad and I used to love to watch Saturday Hockey Night in Canada together while I was growing up in rural Saskatchewan,” Bruinooge says. “Then in dad’s later years, we’d watch the Oilers play too.”
Bruinooge’s father had severe dementia and passed away at age 79 due to complications from the disease. “But even near the end, when we’d sit and watch the games on TV, I’d see him smile at a play, and look at me with a wink,” Bruinooge says.
Playing with NHL Alumni for a cause has been a nobrainer for the leadership executive and former college hockey player. While the game is in late April, Bruinooge has already raised over $3,700 of his personal $5,000 goal.
“I can’t say enough about how great it is to play with NHL Alumni. Last year, our team played with Penguins alum Rob Brown and he was fantastic, sitting with us in the dressing room, telling stories over a beer,” he says.
“I know how much joy hockey brought to dad’s life and the special memories we shared, so raising funds for Alzheimer’s through a hockey tournament is such a great tiein. It makes me emotional to think about it, but I think dad would be smiling down.”
This year’s Face Off tournament goal is $1.2 million to support the more than 40,000 Albertans living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. Proceeds go toward the Alzheimer Society of Alberta and NWT.
To learn more about the tournament, including how you can register or donate, visit
THIS STORY WAS CREATED BY CONTENT WORKS, POSTMEDIA’S COMMERCIAL CONTENT DIVISION, ON BEHALF OF THE ALZHEIMER SOCIETY OF ALBERTA AND NORTHWEST TERRITORIES.