One of the most heartfelt movements by the NHL is their ‘Hockey Fights Cancer’ movement. Throughout the latter half of October and November, every team in the NHL suits up in pink and purple warmups, and auctions them afterwards. All proceeds go to fighting cancer, and they accept donations throughout the whole process.
St. Louis Blues to Wear Special Warmups to Honor Ari Dougan
The St. Louis Blues are doing something a little different with their jerseys this year, though. Last season, they welcomed 10-year-old Ari Dougan to the team. She became best friends with Blues star Vladimir Tarasenko during the team’s ‘Hockey Fights Cancer’ night. She was introduced to the team, staff, and fans; and was instantly a favorite.
Her energy and smile radiated through the whole Blues fan base. Everyone fell in love with Ari. She ended up joining the Blues on a two-game road trip to the western half of the USA in March. The trip was Tarasenko’s birthday present to Ari. Her bubbly personality and optimism in everything she does was featured in many forms of St. Louis media. This included the time she sat down with Carter Hutton and Ryan Reaves during the team’s popular ‘Zero to Sixty’ video series.
Ari was dealing with a cancer that affects nerve cells and spreads rapidly through the body. She took a turn for the worse in November, and quickly started going downhill. On November 11, at 10:15 in the morning, Ari Dougan passed away. It was an extremely hard thing for all Blues players, staff, and fans to deal with. She was such a popular face in St. Louis, and was as close as family with everyone she came across. Her death is still hard to process, almost a month later. The Blues paid homage to her when they released a dedication video the day after her passing, or when they released a video showing off how they’re going to honor Ari.
Blues to Honor Ari on Friday
On Thursday the team announced that they’ll make a slight change to their ‘Hockey Fights Cancer’ jerseys. The numbers on the back, as well as a few other bits and pieces of the jersey, will match Ari’s fashion style. The 10-year-old fashion queen almost made sure to look flamboyant and sparkly, wearing a bedazzled jersey to her Blues games and a fluffy yellow and pink coat when the team wasn’t playing. To match this, the Blues are bedazzling the player’s numbers. They’re also wearing a patch on their right shoulder that reads “Ari’s Light”.
Blues fans are speechless with this decision by the team. All associated with the Blues are more than excited to join arms and honor Ari when the team wears the special jerseys on Friday, December 1st. It gives us all the chance to look back on one of the biggest fans of the Blues.
While she was young, Ari inspired Blues fans players and staff. She was, hands down, an amazing girl. She wouldn’t want to see any of us upset over her death. The always happy 11-year-old would only want us to smile over the amazing life she was able to have in only 11 years. Ari’s light is still radiating through the Blues fanbase, and we here at LWOH can’t wait to see what the Blues do on Friday. Arianna’s family is already scheduled to drop the puck before the game.
Some fans are started a petition to have a banner raised in Scottrade Center, in memory of Ari. We encourage you to back the petition that’s already got over 10,000 votes. Ari’s Facebook page, Fight like Arianna, is also doing a lot to support the fight against cancer.