President Obama: Gordie Howe defined hockey ‘for a lifetime’

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Tributes have been coming in all day for the legendary ‘Mr. Hockey’ Gordie Howe, who passed away Friday at the age of 88.

U.S. President Barack Obama released a statement on Friday, saying Howe “defined” the sport of hockey “for a lifetime.”

Obama’s full statement, as per NHL.com:

The list of hockey players who suited up in six different decades, including returning to the ice after being inducted into the Hall of Fame, is a short one: it starts and ends with Gordie Howe.

But the list of kids who skated around the pond until dark, picturing themselves passing, scoring, and enforcing like Howe, dreaming of hoisting the Stanley Cup like him – that one comprises too many to count. Howe’s productivity, perseverance, and humility personified his adopted hometown of Detroit, to which he brought four championships and which he represented as an All-Star more than 20 times. The greatest players define their game for a generation; over more than half a century on the ice, Mr. Hockey defined it for a lifetime. Michelle and I send our condolences to his sons and daughter, his family, and his loyal fans from Hockeytown to Hartford to Houston and across North America.

A member of the Hockey Hall of Fame with four Stanley Cups, six Hart Trophies and six Art Ross trophies, Howe played 25 of 26 NHL seasons with the Detroit Red Wings, before eventually playing one final NHL season in Hartford at the age of 51.

Remembering Gordie Howe:

Video: Dan Patrick reflects on the legacy of Gordie Howe

Gordie Howe and Wayne Gretzky: A legendary bond

NHL mourns loss of the ‘incomparable Gordie Howe’

Facts about Gordie Howe (that often feel like fiction)