The Anaheim Ducks are asking fans attending Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Sabres to bring “crazy socks for courageous kids” that will be given to cancer patients at children’s hospitals throughout the world.

The socks are to be dropped off at the south and northeast entrances to Honda Center. The request for socks is dubbed a “JoyDrive” and is intended to support the Rancho Santa Margarita-based Jessie Rees Foundation, which has assisted more than 125,000 children in all 50 states and 30 nations.

The first 400 donors to the JoyDrive will receive a Chick-fil-A digital offer card good for a Chick-fil-A chicken sandwich or an eight-count nugget meal.

Chick-fil-A will be selling mini-plush Chick-fil-A cows for $5 in the south entrance. Chick-fil-A will donate a Jessie Rees Foundation “Never Give Up-” branded mini-plush Chick-fil-A cow to be put in a JoyJar for each mini- plush Chick-fil-A cow purchased.

The foundation honors Jessica Joy Rees, known as Jessie, a 12-year-old girl who was being treated for two brain tumors at Children’s Hospital of Orange County. Her compassion for others led her to ask her parents “How can we help them?” referring to the other children who were in longterm, in- patient treatment at the hospital.

After receiving approval from her parents to find a way to help, Jessie created “JoyJars,” jars filled with toys and games to help children fighting cancer pass the time in the hospital.

Before her death in 2012, Jessie personally stuffed and sent out 3,000 JoyJars to children fighting cancer in homes and hospitals, including delivering some to children being treated at the City of Hope National Medical Center in Duarte.

The foundation seeks to fulfill its mission to ensure that every child fighting cancer has the support to never give up by connecting with families, bringing awareness to their stories, offering resources and sending the entire family encouragement.

The first 5,000 fans in attendance will receive a Jessie Rees Foundation “Never Give Up” wristband. `Never Ever Give Up was Jessie’s personal motto and message.

The JoyDrive is an element of the Ducks’ Hockey Fights Cancer Night, part of the monthlong leaguewide effort to raise awareness and help in the fight against cancer.

Ducks players will wear lavender Hockey Fights Cancer warm-up jerseys that will be up for auction from 4 p.m. Sunday through 3 p.m. Monday.

Bids can be placed by texting Ducks to 52182 or online at AnaheimDucks.com/ingameauctions. All proceeds from the auction will benefit the Jessie Rees Foundation.

Ducks coaches, broadcasters and executives will wear lavender Hockey Fights Cancer ties in recognition of the evening. Lavender is the color representing awareness for all types of cancer.

Fans will have the opportunity to fill out “I Fight For” cards to honor those who have battled cancer. The cards will be available at the south and northeast entrances and on the Main Concourse.

Fans will be invited to display their “I Fight For” cards during a moment of recognition taking place during the first period.

The Hockey Fights Cancer initiative was founded in December 1998 by the NHL and National Hockey League Players Association.

More than $18 million has been raised to support national and local cancer research institutions, children’s hospitals, and player and local charities in the United States and Canada.

–City News Service

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