Bob Probert ride slated for June 25, features two stops in Amherstburg

 

By Ron Giofu

The seventh annual Bob Probert Ride is scheduled for June 25 and two of the stops on the ride will be in Amherstburg.

The Fort Fun Centre and Wolfhead Distillery will be two of the stops on the ride with it launching at 11 a.m. that day from Thunder Road Harley Davidson in Windsor. Other stops include the Colchester Bar & Grill and the Caboto Club, with the latter being the final stop.

Bill Marra, vice president of external affairs with Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare, said they are thankful to the new ownership at the Fort, formerly the Verdi Club, for allowing the ride to keep stopping there and also acknowledged that Wolfhead is a new stop this year.

Proceeds benefit cardiac programs at HDGH. To date, over $647,000 has been raised with those funds contributing to a a new rehabilitation and wellness centre at the Prince Road campus. Talks have started to expand cardiac rehabilitation services to Essex County residents with a development of a satellite location.

Organizers, sponsors and members of the Probert family helped launch this year’s Bob Probert Ride last Wednesday morning. On the motorcycle are ride captain Dave Hutchison and Probert’s wife Dani.

Organizers, sponsors and members of the Probert family helped launch this year’s Bob Probert Ride last Wednesday morning. On the motorcycle are ride captain Dave Hutchison and Probert’s wife Dani.

Dani Probert, wife of the late Detroit Red Wings and Chicago Blackhawks forward, said there is a lot of hard work that goes into planning the ride every year. She noted Bob died July 5, 2010 of a massive heart attack.

“For us to raise money for cardiac care, and we’ve had loved ones in the past couple of years who are going through the same thing, it’s so tragic. We wanted to turn this around and find something positive and for my kids it’s something positive for us to focus on and be a part of,” she said.

Probert added there are people that have been part of the ride since Day 1. Last year’s ride attracted over 1,200 motorcycles. The money raised speaks volumes of everyone involved with the ride, she added.

“It is a real community effort,” said Probert.

This year’s ride captain is Dave Hutchison, a former NHL defenseman and a friend of Bob Probert. Hutchison stated there is “a tight hockey family” and noted he was honored to be the ride captain.

“I haven’t missed a Probert ride yet,” he said. “In fact, Bob and I rode together in Ride for Dad in London a couple of times. Our friendship was based on doing fundraising events through the NHL and the riding community. So whether it was ball hockey with the troops or riding our bikes, Bob had a big heart and always wanted to give back.”
At a kickoff event last Wednesday, Hutchison relayed stories of being with Bob Probert while visiting soldiers serving in Afghanistan.

Hutchison played 584 NHL games and accumulated 119 points and 1,550 penalty minutes. He played with the Los Angeles Kings, Chicago Blackhawks, New Jersey Devils and Toronto Maple Leafs.

For more information on this year’s Bob Probert Ride, visit www.facebook.com/probertride or www.probertride.com.

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