LOS ANGELES — On a night when the Los Angeles Kings earned a much-needed 5-3 win over the Calgary Flames at Staples Center in Los Angeles, they honored former head coach Barry Melrose during one of their Legends Nights. But they also honored one very special guest.
On February 12, nine-year-old Grace Bowen, who played right wing for the West Northumberland Wild of the Lower Lakes Female Hockey League, was honored by the Kings prior to the game.
Accompanied by her father, Greg, and her mother, Andrea, young Grace, a native of Grafton, Ontario, dropped the puck for the ceremonial opening face-off.
As reported by Pete Fisher in Northumberland Today, Prior to her birthday in April 2014, Grace was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a rare form of cancer.
Doctors found a tumor in her right femur along with a pathological fracture. Grace underwent 7 1/2 months of chemotherapy, along with “…rotation plasty surgery to remove the tumor and utilize her ankle to create a new knee. That joint will be used when Grace gets a prosthetic.”
Since then, Grace has been fitted with a prosthetic leg, and has been learning to walk again.
After the game, Grace and her parents were invited into the Kings dressing room where her friend, right wing Justin Williams, sat with her as all the players met Grace, spoke with her for a couple of minutes, and signed the Kings jersey she was wearing.
Frozen Royalty captured a handful of those moments in photographs, which you can view below.
Grace Bowen Gets Royal Treatment From The Los Angeles Kings
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Seven exclusive photos; click on any photo to view a larger image and to click through the gallery.
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I know I’ve written this elsewhere, but in a local hockey world of journalists who cover “BREAKING NEWS” (that is usually second hand anyway), this story is inspiring and touching. Thanks for this.
Justin Williams is one class act! Thanks for helping to make this special moment for Grace and her family to happen….we are proud of you…..
Thanks for the backstory! That was a very sweet moment on the ice last night.