Mark Messier has spent the past two months self-quarantined with his family at home in South Carolina, yet the six-time Stanley Cup winner's thoughts have been with those impacted by the coronavirus in New York.
Messier, who played 10 seasons for the New York Rangers and helped them win the Stanley Cup in 1994, is aware the city has been among those hit hardest by the pandemic in the United States. But what stands out to him is the way New Yorkers have again pulled together in response.
The Hockey Hall of Fame center witnessed similar efforts while playing for the Rangers following the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.
"Going back to 9-11 and seeing how people galvanized together in the face of adversity is always inspiring," Messier said. "We've lost a lot of great people, so that's been super challenging. But I think people in general when something happens are more than willing to reach out and raise money or bring awareness or do whatever's necessary for people to get through. … Our first responders and the people who are working in the hospitals, it's incredibly disheartening for what's happening, but it's also inspiring to see how people rally around causes like this."
This time around, Messier will do his part by getting back on the ice.