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Gordie Howe tributes continue; funeral to be Wednesday in Detroit

Gordie Howe | 1928 - 2016
Gordie Howe, left, and Alex Delvecchio listen to instructions from Detroit Red Wings Coach Sid Abel during practice on Sept. 8, 1962.
(Bruce Bennett)

Prominent citizens of the hockey world on Saturday continued to pay tribute to “Mr. Hockey,” Gordie Howe, who died Friday at 88.

“When you think of hockey, that’s who you think of,” Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby said Saturday after his team practiced in advance of Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final. “He’s a role model for a lot of people, including myself.”

Crosby said he considered himself “pretty fortunate” to have met the Hall of Famer, but even those who never met Howe were impressed by his legendary toughness and longevity as well as his humility. Howe turned 52 during his last professional season and scored 15 goals playing alongside two of his sons, Mark and Marty.

“That’s crazy, isn’t it?” Sharks forward Logan Couture said.

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“You just think of his name and you think of the sport and how long he played and all the points. From what I’ve heard from people who have met him, he was an even better person. I’ve heard a lot of good things about him.”

The NHL is expected to pay tribute to Howe before Sunday’s game at SAP Center, but a league spokesman said specific details had not been finalized as of mid-afternoon Saturday.

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The Detroit Red Wings, who won the Stanley Cup four times while Howe wore the winged wheel, announced that a public visitation for Howe will be held Tuesday at Joe Louis Arena from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. Eastern time. Howe’s funeral will take place Wednesday at the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Detroit.

The Howe family has asked that, instead of sending flowers, anyone so inclined make a donation to one of three charities he favored. Those charities are the Gordie Howe Traumatic Brain Injury Initiative, based in Toledo, Ohio; the Howe Foundation, in Rochester Hills, Mich.; and the Gordie Howe Fund for Alzheimer’s Research in Saskatoon, Canada.

Follow Helene Elliott on Twitter @helenenothelen

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