Hockey in Edmonton will never be the same again.
Longtime Edmonton Oilers locker room attendant and unofficial super fan Joey Moss has passed away at just 57 years old, Global TV's Kevin Karius confirmed yesterday evening.
Moss was the longest serving member of the Oilers staff, having been employed by the team for nearly 40 seasons. Throughout all the ups and downs of the Oilers franchise, Moss was always there with a smile and a positive attitude no matter the circumstances. Moss’ relationship with the Oilers began in 1980 when his sister began dating Oilers superstar Wayne Gretzky. While the relationship between The Great One and Moss’ sister ended, a lifelong friendship between Moss and Gretzky was born.
Gretzky, who remained friends with Moss until the end, issued an emotional statement on his friends' passing last night:
It was Gretzky then who, after witnessing Moss struggle to make ends meet and find purpose for himself, approached Oilers general manager Glenn Sather inquiring about a position for the teenaged Moss. The young man seized the opportunity to be around his heroes and help them prepare by cleaning, doing laundry and generally pitching in wherever needed. He hasn’t looked back for a moment.
Three seasons ago when Moss sang ‘O Canada’ to the assembled crowd at Rogers Place prior to game 5 of the Oilers’ first round playoff series against the San Jose Sharks, the entire of the hockey world was introduced to Moss and his passion for the game and the team he loves. He had an infectious enthusiasm and it’s hard not to affected by his raw energy and unbridled passion.
RIP Joey. You were taken from us far too soon, but you'll live on forever in the hearts and minds of Oilers fans everywhere.
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