River Dragons Launch "Hockey Helps" Benefiting Michael Bunn and Family

Columbus, GA - The Columbus River Dragons are launching an initiative to help medical costs involved with the care of Carolina Thunderbirds forward Michael Bunn.

In late April, Bunn was found unconscious in his car in Greensboro, NC and was diagnosed with a hypoxic injury to the brain and was placed on a ventilator. In the weeks that followed, his journey to recovery has been slow but gradual with improvements each day to the point that he was able to be taken off the ventilator earlier this month. He still has a long road of recovery involving neurological recovery, speech therapy and physical therapy.

For more updates and information on Bunn's status, his family have set up a CaringBridge page where they have been journaling his progress consistently with friends and family.

"On the ice, we battle each other, off the ice we battle for each other" Current River Dragons and former Thunderbirds President/GM Scott Brand said. "Regardless of the fact that we have ties to Carolina and Michael [Bunn] we are a hockey family. We are blessed that many of our fans have reached out and asked about supporting Bunn and what they can do to help. As you can imagine, the costs associated with such care can be burdensome and the River Dragons wish to offer a hand of support to one of our own in this time of need."

The River Dragons have set up a benefit fundraiser on LiveSource (a free app you can download on all Android and iOS devices) with the intent of raising money to help support Bunn and his family. LiveSource has graciously agreed to waive all fees meaning 100% of purchases involved in this benefit will be going directly to the people that need it the most.

On top of proceeds generated from the LiveSource items, the River Dragons ownership group, Ignite Professional Hockey LLC and the Croop family is donating $1,000 to aid in the cause.

A GoFundMe page has also been set up for direct donations without bidding on any merchandise or experiences. 

The Bunn family has also set up a Venmo account to take direct donations for Michael's medical expenses at @Bunner11. Payments via Venmo can only be done through mobile devices. 

"Michael Bunn is a tremendous hockey player and an even better person, our family prays for Michael’s full recovery." River Dragons owner Jeff Croop said. "Several River Dragons players have played with and against Michael in their careers and regardless of the color jersey you wear, you're part of a hockey fraternity that looks out for each other when we need to the most."

There will be four items available via LiveSource.

The first item is a one-of-a kind hybrid jersey based on Columbus' alternate jerseys from the previous season.

You will notice from the pictures that the front sash reads "Carolina" and has Bunn's name and number (11) on the back. On the shoulders are one logo each from the River Dragons and Thunderbirds, showing that while we may be rivals on the ice we come together in times of need for each other off the ice.

The auction for the jersey ends on Monday, May 18 at 3 P.M.

This jersey will be ordered and delivered closer to season start to allow the winner to select what size they would like the jersey to be.

The next two items are special experiences you can be a part of for the 2020-21 season.

The first fan experience is a road trip with the Dragons!

You and a guest will be treated to a full hockey road trip with the Dragons for a weekend against the Carolina Thunderbirds. Ride the bus with the team to Winston-Salem, get VIP seats to the games and even be on air on the River Dragons Radio network for a period of play! Hotel accommodations and meals included in this package plus travel in style with the team with special River Dragons team track jackets just like the players wear!

This fan experience is up for auction right now and will end on Friday, May 22nd at 3 P.M.

Our final fan experience takes you inside the mind of Boom-Boom as he gets ready for a game!

Our honorary coach for a day experience will give you all the behind the scenes details that go into preparing and executing on a game day. You'll be with head coach Jerome Bechard for pregame report and meetings as well as watch the game right from the bench as the River Dragons take on their opponents!

When the FPHL schedule is released a list of dates will be given to the winner for them to select which game they would like to use as their special experience day.

This particular experience will be a raffled prize with tickets starting at $5 per chance. The raffle will be drawn Friday, May 22nd at 4 P.M.

And finally, we have an OGIO backpack available for raffle that can be custom stitched with a name and a River Dragons or Thunderbirds logo on it.

These raffle tickets start at $3 per chance and will be drawn at the same time as the other raffle (5/22 at 4P.M.)

The River Dragons hope you can find it in your hearts to bid early and often on these great one-of-a-kind items and experiences that will benefit a hockey brother and his family who have been stricken with a difficult situation. Thank you and happy bidding to you all!