Coach Babcock: 'Cherish All of the Moments That We Are Given'
Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock spoke about the importance of family and attitude at an event hosted by the Novi and Livonia chambers of commerce Thursday.
The day after two former Red Wings died in a tragic plane crash, head coach Mike Babcock spoke to the Novi and Livonia chambers of commerce Thursday about the importance of family and attitude in all aspects of life.
Babcock, who fought off tears early in his presentation, said the accident made him stop and appreciate his own life and family. He told the crowd how he made sure to attend his son’s hockey practice on Wednesday, and that earlier in the day he sent a text message to his daughter, a student at the University of Michigan, just to check in and let her know he was thinking of her.
“I think we have to cherish all of the moments that we are given and be thankful for what we have,” Babcock said. “When I got up today, I had an opportunity choose my attitude. That attitude affects the people I come in contact with, whether I intend to or not. What’s most important to me are my children, and I think all of us would like our children to be proud of us.”
Babcock’s scheduled speech at Schoolcraft College’s VisTaTech Center came the day after former Red Wings assistant coach Brad McCrimmon and former defenseman Ruslan Salei were among the 43 killed when a plane carrying a Russian professional hockey team crashed north of Moscow.
Linda Daly, the executive director of the Novi Chamber of Commerce, said she found Babcock’s speech to be very appropriate given Wednesday’s tragic event.
“I think it was definitely the right message,” Daly said. “To do otherwise would not have honored the people that lost their lives.”
Babcock also spoke to the approximately 340 attendees about how the Detroit Red Wings’ organization goes about its work and how many other successful businesses operate the same way.
“It’s about doing it every day, bringing it every day, and it’s about finding a new way before someone else does,” Babcock said. “If you are doing what everyone else does, you’re not getting ahead, and if you do what you did last year, you’re standing still. You’ve got to be evolving all the time.”
Daly said she believes business people, like members of the chambers, enjoy hearing from prominent members of the sports community because their philosophies are universal.
“It’s just the message of success,” Daly said. “(Babcock) is obviously a successful coach, he’s got a successful family life, and he’s got successful friendships, so I think everyone here just tries to take some of his words of wisdom.”
Novi Mayor Pro-Tem Bob Gatt likened how Babcock leads his team to how he and so many other people are leaders in the Novi community.
“It’s leaders that bring a community together, guide its development and shape its spirit.” Gatt said. “Coach Babcock and his team work together toward their goal, just as we as city officials, business leaders and citizens work together to create a community that we are proud to live in.”