Over the years, Anders Lee has shown heâ€™s more than just a good hockey player for the Islanders. Heâ€™s also proven to be a quality human being and a class act.
Itâ€™s one of the reasons heâ€™s the current captain of the organization and the ambassador of the franchise.Thatâ€™s why what he did yesterday resonates so much with the tight-knit community that is Islander fans.
Last night a video of surfaced on social media with Lee FaceTiming a kid named Alexander Gross.
Video of Anders Lee Facetiming my Son Alexanderhttps://t.co/BE8JggW1R5@leeberr09 @NYIslanders @abreecker
— Garrison Gross (@GarrisonSpencer) December 23, 2020
Alex Gross, 17, was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer earlier this year. Doctors told him and his family he might not make it past three weeks after he had surgery back in February. But heâ€™s continued to fight through all the trials and tribulations.
Alex is also a huge Islanders fan, as is his entire family. Thomas Greiss, who is no longer with the team, is actually his favorite Islander.
So when he got the call from Anders, it was a very cool moment for both he and his family.
â€œThe Islanders are very special to us and having them there for us at a time that is so difficult mean a lot to us,â€ said Grossâ€™s father, Garrison.
The call came as a total surprise to Alex. He was just finishing lunch and didnâ€™t know it was coming.
â€œIt was amazing to watch my sons face light up when he got the call,â€ Garrison added.
Anders Lee Face Timed my Friend Garrisons son in NC yesterday for 5 minutes! He has brain cancer. Anders invited him to practice and games. Anders said if they were in NY, he would have gone to the house. I have no words! None! What a class act!
— Alan Breecker (@abreecker) December 22, 2020
The idea of Lee talking with Alex was set in motion after Garrisonâ€™s close friend and fellow Isles fan Alan Breecker shared his post about Alex and the hopes of the Islanders reaching out to him.
Once the team saw the post they contacted Garrison to set the arrangements.
â€œI told him the best times to call and he timed it perfect,â€ he said. They called me first to verify it is good, I confirmed and they surprised Alexander.â€
The clip of Alex receiving made the rounds on social media last night and immediately made spread on Isles Twitter with messages and tweets in support of Alex following thereafter.
#Isles captain reaching out to an ill child. Best wishes to Alexander! By the way, have I mentioned #WeHaveTheBestGame #NHL https://t.co/YpBMkYKjc2
— Eric Hornick (@ehornick) December 23, 2020
Have a platform?
Use it. @leeberr09 great job captain! Keeping setting a great example of being a leader & a good person. Keep Fighting Alexander!!!! #isles https://t.co/G027oNglli
— Matthew Dillner (@MatthewDillner) December 23, 2020
The moment for Alex and his family is one theyâ€™ll be sure not to forget. Itâ€™s also just another reminder of how much Lee does for the community.
As of three days ago, Alexâ€™s condition continues to improve according to his dad. The last update had Alex once again getting his appetite back and his platelets back up over 200 again.
Alex continues to be an inspiration for many. And if youâ€™d like to help him out, you can check out his GoFundMe page under the name Hope for Alex.