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Komets achieved first Turner Cup 50 years ago

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For more on the Komets, follow Blake Sebring on Twitter at www.twitter.com/blakesebring and at his blog www.tailingthekomets.com.

Local boy grabbed the puck during celebration

Tuesday, April 23, 2013 - 6:30 pm

What would be the most-prized piece of Komets memorabilia a fan could have?

Would it be the stick George Drysdale used to score the first goal in franchise history?

Would it be the first jersey Mr. Komet Eddie Long wore?

How about the puck from the final game of the 1993 playoff sweep?

Maybe Dennis Blume had possession of the best souvenir for more than 40 years.

Blume was 13 years old 50 years ago today when the Komets clinched their first Turner Cup championship. As soon as Fort Wayne's Game 5 win over Minneapolis was complete, Blume jumped onto the ice to join the celebration.

``It was the era when there was no glass around the rink,'' Blume said. ``When the Komets won the cup, the fans could just storm the ice like they do in NCAA basketball today. It was mostly people who were my age. I was 14 at the time. I just sort of jumped onto the ice and the Komets are celebrating and sticks are flying up into the air.

``It was just laying on the ice. As I see most of the kids were going after the sticks, I saw the puck laying there and just picked it up.''

Because there was no glass, Blume and friends used to get autographs from players during warm-ups. There was a lot more familiarity and conversations between the fans and players who also did not wear helmets.

``You'd have a row of kids waiting there,'' Blume said. ``The players would just come over and sign your program. In some ways that's a much different era in that the fan-player interaction was so much better than it is now. It kind of made it nice.''

Blume kept the championship puck until he ran into former Komets owner and business manager Colin Lister at the McMillen Park Ice Arena a few years ago. He asked Lister if he'd be interested in the puck.

``This was probably five or six years ago,'' Blume said. ``When I was playing for the Midget Komets, Colin was the coach. I approached him and then I went home and brought it back. Colin was so excited about having that puck.''

Lister, who died Dec. 31, 2010, kept the puck with the hoard of memorabilia from his hockey and baseball careers. His good friend Marcia Cuff found it recently in a truck of Lister's belongings.

The puck has a red International Hockey League decal on one side, though parts have chipped off over the years. The other side has Blume's 13-year-old handwriting on a sticker that says, ``1992-1963, Turner Cup, Championship puck.''

Cuff said she's going to have to put into a display case and then present it to the Komets.