Thursday, June 5, 2008

Lord Love the Detroit Red Wings

One of my best friends, Sully, is quite possibly the biggest Detroit Red Wings fan on the planet. He'll tell you with a straight face that Steve Yzerman was the greatest player to ever lace 'em up, he'll talk himself into Chris Osgood being able to backstop a team to a Stanley Cup final, and come playoff time, he'll still don the #19 jersey he's had since he was a kid, despite the fact that it's about seven sizes too small. Through good times and bad, he's always been there for the Wings.

Yesterday afternoon, Sully lost his father after a long and heroic battle with Leukemia.

I get a lot of flack for writing about sports. People tell me that I devote too much of my time to sports, that I care too much about these meaningless games, and that the teams I immerse myself in are altogether too important to me. I'm often told that I shouldn't care about these teams or these games because sports isn't real life, and these teams and these games don't give a damn about me one way or the other. And that may or may not be the case. In fact, it probably is the case. But that isn't the point.

Because sometimes you need a break from real life. Sometimes you need an escape from the reality of the way things are. And sometimes you need the hope that allows you to believe that things will one day be better than they are today.

And sometimes you just need something to take your mind off the fact that you just lost your best friend.

I know there were few things in this world Sully and his dad enjoyed more than watching the hockey game on Hockey Night in Canada in the Sullivan family basement; Sully as a Wings fan, Lornie as a Habs fan, but the two of them always understanding the unspoken bond that can only exist between a father and a son, somehow manifesting itself in the game of hockey.

That bond is evident in the clip below. Almost without exception, each of these guys wants to share this moment; the pinnacle of their professional lives; with their dad.

And despite the fact that in a million years, the outcome of a sporting event could never begin to make up for the loss of Lornie Sullivan, I'm just glad that for one fleeting moment, Sully's team could be there for him.


Anonymous said...

Sean, you just brought a fucking tear to my eye.

Anonymous said...

well said. think about how many games those two watch together in that basement. Awesome

Anonymous said...

SULLIVAN, Lawrence Edward (Lornie)

Surrounded by his loving family, on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital, after a courageous battle with leukemia, at the age of 60. Loving husband of Evelyn (O'Neill) Sullivan. Cherished and loving father of Shelagh (Bill Asselin), Emmett (Tanya Chudziak), Donovan (Vera Ruzicic). Dearly loved son of Myrtle (Nephin) Sullivan and the late Emmett Sullivan. Loved brother of Marlyn (Marcel) Crozon, the late Patrick (Sharon), Betty (the late Nelson) Morris, Carmelita (the late Jean-Guy) Ouellette, Arlene (David) Clyde, Jerry (Colleen), Myra Sullivan, Jim (Eleanor). Sadly missed by brothers-in-law / sisters-in-law Don O'Neill and Eloise, Bill and Eleanor Hossie.

Lornie will be forever remembered by all his nieces and nephews and his best bud Julie Dawson, who stayed by his side during his illness. A beautiful man whose bright smile and gentle nature touched and encouraged all who knew him. Lornie's legacy lives on in the hearts and minds of generations of family and people proud to call him a friend.

Visitation will be held at the Glen Oaks Memorial Chapel and Reception Centre, 3164 Ninth Line (Dundas / 403), Oakville, 905-257-8822 on Sunday, June 8 from 1-3 and 6-9 p.m. A Funeral Mass will be held on Monday, June 9, 2008 at St. Michael's Parish, 181 Sewell Dr., Oakville at 10 a.m. Interment at Glen Oaks Memorial Gardens. The family wishes to thank everyone for their tremendous out-pouring of support in their time of need. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to St. Paul The Hermit Sheenboro Memorial Fund in Sheenboro, Quebec J0X 2Z0 or the Leukemia Research Foundation. Online condolences available at .

Anonymous said...

Sean, I will always keep this article close to my heart . And I will read it to lorne at his grave , aswell as post a copy at his memorial up in sheen. Your a good man, and a greater friend.