For as long as I've known him, which admittedly has not been long, Hunter Maki has been one of the most passionate hockey fans that I have ever encountered. Now, I generally will tap the brakes when I refer to someone as being the "most" anything because to me, being the "most" anything goes far beyond what people see on the surface. Some may consider me the "most passionate" Stars fan due to the fact that I have shed a "sports tear" at the end of every season for the last 6 years.
However, for me to consider one the "most passionate" fan of a team and/or sport, I consider way more than the hockey gear they wear to every game or the consistent conversations surrounding said subject. Hunter's knowledge of the game for someone who wasn't born in an area that has snow on the ground 65% of the year is astonishing. As his sister, and StarsInsider.com photographer, Clarissa has said often, Hunter "has been in skates not long after he learned how to walk."
So, it should be to no one's surprise that when the University of North Texas held their open tryouts for their hockey team earlier this week, Hunter was right there, laced and taped and ready to hit the ice. It should be less surprising that after the first night, it was announced that Hunter had made the team. Now, not being recognized as a scholarship sport at UNT, much of the expenses that are accrued by the organization must be taken care of by the players themselves. Now, Hunter is one who has worked tirelessly to achieve the goals that he has sought for himself, but anyone will attest that the life of a college student is very time constraining. Sure, Hunter could get a full time job somewhere and pay the fees on his own. However, when you factor in class and study time along with practice, that is nearly impossible.
I am proud to support Hunter in his endeavor to play the sport that we all love. I ask that all of our Stars family do what they can to help him as well. Give as much, or as little as you can. If you can't give now, please pass this on. Retweet, re-post, tell your friends. I said it last night, it's not often that you can have a direct impact on helping someone achieve their dream. My full time employment allows me to do that as I help people get into homes. I can't tell you how rewarding it is to know that you helped someone's dream become a reality.
Please go to Hunter's GoFundMe page and like I said, give what you can and most of all, tell all you know.