Several hundred Flyers fans gather in Wilmington to show their support for the orange and black.
Members of the Philadelphia Flyers organization showed some love to the team’s fans in Delaware, and a crowd of several hundred in Wilmington’s Rodney Square returned that sentiment with the standard “Let’s go Flyers” chant during a noontime rally.
Flyers’ ambassador Bob “The Hound” Kelly, who played a key role in the team’s two Stanley Cup championships in 1974 and ’75, was on hand to get the crowd excited about the team’s effort to win its first Stanley Cup in 35 years. “You couldn’t write the way this thing is playing out. Hopefully things are lining up there for us, and we get it done and get a parade,” Kelly said. The event also signifies the Flyers’ regional impact and influence beyond the borders of Philadelphia. Of the Flyers’ Delaware fans, Kelly says, “We really appreciate them being fans down here, so this is a way of giving back.”
Wilmington Mayor James Baker received a Flyers jersey from Kelly during the ceremony. He says sports have a great way of bringing people of different backgrounds together in a common interest. “It’s just good to have a lot of people come out and have a reason to cheer and be happy about things. This is what needs to happen to our country, is that we need to rally together instead of the divisiveness that we see by political people and groups.”
Baker says a Rodney Square rally is good luck, citing the thousands of people who jammed into downtown Wilmington to see then-candidate Barack Obama hold a campaign rally. “You’ve had a lot of good events here that have recognized, I think, historic turning points, and it’s been pretty lucky.”
Kelly says this year’s Flyers team has already written its name in the record books, and he doesn’t believe they’re done yet. “They’re writing history every day they step on the ice.”