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RUSH, SPIRE MOTORSPORTS TO HONOR LOCAL VETERAN DURING COCA-COLA 600

Monday, May 24th
RUSH, SPIRE MOTORSPORTS TO HONOR LOCAL VETERAN DURING COCA-COLA 600

(RAPID CITY, SD) – The Rapid City Rush, proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Arizona Coyotes, are proud to announce plans to honor the memory of an Ellsworth Air Force Base veteran during Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series Coca Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Through the team’s ownership group, Spire Holdings, United States Air Force Captain Ryan “FOGG” Phaneuf’s name will be displayed on the Spire Motorsports No. 77 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE for the race as part of NASCAR’s “600 Miles of Remembrance” and “NASCAR Salutes” programs. The announcement was made in-game on Saturday night, the final game of “Military Appreciation Weekend” against the Indy Fuel.

Capt. Phaneuf, 30, was assigned to the 37th Bomb Squadron at Ellsworth Air Force Base. A native of Hudson, New Hampshire, he passed away on January 27, 2020 while co-piloting the Bombardier E-11A that crashed in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan while serving his country on a voluntary deployment supporting Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.

“Anyone who loses a loved one fears their memory will be forgotten. I'm grateful for everyone at the Rapid City Rush, Spire Holdings and Spire Motorsports, who have helped in this effort to honor Ryan's life, service, and sacrifice,” said Megan Phaneuf, his widow.

“I am so proud of our organization, from ownership to our front office, for embracing the opportunity to help memorialize a veteran in our community,” said Todd Mackin, President of Spire Hockey, a subsidiary of Spire Holdings. “It is our never-ending mission to be an outstanding community partner and not just a hockey team. We are fortunate to operate in a community with a strong military presence and history and cannot thank these men and women enough for their sacrifices in protecting our freedom. We are forever grateful to Captain Phaneuf for his courage in serving the United States.”

Now in its seventh year, NASCAR Salutes Together with Coca-Cola began at Kansas Speedway with the Buschy McBusch Race 400 on May 2nd and concludes with the return of “600 Miles of Remembrance” during the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway Memorial Day Weekend (May 30, at 6 p.m. ET on FOX, PRN and SiriusXM).

The mission of the “600 Miles of Remembrance” is to honor the men and women who gave their lives in active duty service defending the country. Fallen service members will be honored by featuring their names on the windshield of each NASCAR Cup Series car during the Memorial Day Weekend race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

“On behalf of Spire Motorsports, we are honored to have Captain Phaneuf’s name on the No. 77 car for the Coca-Cola 600 in Charlotte,” said Spire Holdings and Rush co-owner T.J. Puchyr. “For the last seven years, NASCAR has advanced this incredible initiative to honor the fallen heroes of our proud nation through the month of May, which is also ‘Military Appreciation Month’. Everyone across our organization is thankful for the opportunity to collaborate with the Rush in helping honor the memory of a fallen hero on Memorial Day weekend in Charlotte.”

The Rush close out the home portion of the 2020-21 ECHL Season this weekend in a “three-in-three” against the Allen Americans. Puck drop for Friday, May 28th, and Saturday, May 29th, is slated for 7:05 p.m. MDT, while Sunday’s matinee finale is 4:05 p.m. MDT on May 30th.

This year, the Rush introduces “Black Hills Night” on Saturday, May 29th against the Allen Americans. This game, presented by LIV Hospitality (Hotel Alex Johnson, Cadillac Jack's Gaming Resort, Tin Lizzie Gaming Resort, and Watiki Indoor Waterpark Resort), spotlights the history and culture of the Black Hills. There will be a pregame tailgate party from 4:30-6:30, featuring live music, drink sampling, interactive games and exhibits for kids of all ages, and much more! Additionally, the Rush will slient auction the game-worn Arizona Coyotes themed 2020-21 Warm-Up Jerseys, presented by Bud Light, on the concourse of the arena throughout the game.

The final home game of the season on Sunday, May 30th is “Fan Appreciation Night”, sponsored by Rush Mountain, where we say “thank you” to the best fans in the ECHL for their support through the 2020-21 season and beyond. The first 750 fans will receive a 2020-21 Rush team poster, courtesy of Singh Contracting.

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