Voting for the Caps Biggest Fan has now closed.
Carole Bovee (nominates posthumously husband Patrick Bovee)
I posthumously nominate my husband Patrick Bovee as the Caps Biggest Fan. Born and raised in this area he followed all DC sports including the Caps going to games at the Cap Center and Verizon Center. When we met he was beyond thrilled that I too was a Caps fan. When the Caps won to go to the Cup Finals in 1998 the dance around our living room is a moment I will cherish forever. He shared his love of the Caps with our grandkids and has them Rockin The Red even though one lives in Washington and one in Louisiana. When on vacation it was sometimes tricky to find Caps games but we always made it work. There was one occasion in Florida where the only place we found broadcasting the games was a Philly Fan establishment - good memories. Year-round he devoured the Caps blogs daily keeping as up to date as possible on all things Caps. Patrick was diagnosed with metastatic cancer on June 1, 2012 and he so wanted to see hockey one more time. His true wish was for the Caps to win the cup and I am hoping that he gets his wish this year only he will be watching from the best seat in the house. He was able to watch two games before things got rough and when he passed on February 9 he went with his #8 jersey and a Caps home shutout against Florida.
Why I could be the Capitals Biggest Fan The "biggest" fan is probably a misnomer, because what the Capitals inspired me to do was big, but it was what I lost. In February of 2012 I weighed 248 pounds, which is a lot of weight to be carrying for someone who is only 5'6". I decided to work on losing that weight. One of the things that helped me the most in my struggle to get into shape was the team - I would think about some of the hard times that some of the undrafted players like Hendy and Beagle had to go through to get into the NHL, and how guys like Mike Green and Nicklas Backstrom, dealt with long-term injuries and pain and suffering to be able to get back into playing shape. The Capitals are a bunch of tough guys, and it made me realize that I was a tough woman and I could get through it. Every time I felt like staying on the couch, I pictured one of those guys telling me I needed to get off my butt and get out there and to work hard. And I did! As of the beginning of April of this year, I am down to 150 pounds, just shy of having lost 100 pounds in total, and I'm still going. I have 10 pounds to lose to get to my goal, and I'm sure I'll get there! The Caps probably saved my life.
Nikole Koutouvalis (nominates fiancé Nick Hoffman)
I'm nominating my fiancé, Nick Hoffman, and he has NO idea! I hope I can surprise him! When I first met Nick, he was decked out in Caps gear. I asked him "Are you going to the game tonight!?" and he responded with "I wish! I'm just extremely superstitious...I HAVE to wear my jersey on game days! If not, it's bad luck!" From that point on I was hooked! His enthusiasm towards this sport can get even the most uninterested people rowdy! He lives, eats, and breathes Caps hockey. I'm pretty confident he knows anything and everything there is to know about the sport and the Caps. We've gone to games, and came back voiceless. He's so passionate about it; if he could, he'd be on the ice with the boys! He is the most sincere, kind, and deserving person. It would mean the world to him to have this opportunity of a lifetime! He has been a fan through thick and thin...back when nobody supported the caps, he did! He is the epitome of a TRUE fan. I can only hope and pray for his amazing self to experience a priceless opportunity like this. If it was something I could buy for him, and I had the money...I would in a HEARTBEAT! In the attached picture, you can see just how passionate he is. He's at the Caps Convention, with a painted face, next to his favorite jersey! He is truly inspirational and deserves every bit of this experience!
On January 2, 2000, I was diagnosed with cancer. I was seven years old. About a month later I went to my first hockey game. The Washington Capitals were playing the Phoenix Coyotes. I didn't know anything about the sport, but I could feel something special. I had great seats thanks to the Olie's All Stars program that worked with kids at Children's Hospital (later that year they let me ride the Zamboni during a playoff game). Plus Selema Witt (Brendan Witt's wife) was sitting next to me and treating me like I was the coolest kid on earth. This probably would have been enough to make me a fan. But of course the Caps couldn't just let me be any old fan; they had to change my life. With five seconds remaining in overtime, a Caps winger burst up the ice on a breakaway and scored just as time expired. Without thinking, but as if it had been planned, everyone in the stands threw their hats on the ice. To this day I have never seen fans throw their hats for anything other than a hat trick. After the game Selema took me to the locker room, where everyone was still high five-ing each other, and introduced me to her husband and all the other guys, including Olie Kolzig who was especially nice to me. That night, as my parents drove me home, I realized I had gone from being the saddest kid to the happiest in one night. I told my parents that as soon as I wasn't sick, I wanted to play hockey. Thirteen years later, I'm in college and play for my school's club team, but every time I watch the Caps I'm that happy little kid again.
My name is Frederick Melvin and since I started playing hockey at age 5 and have loved the Capitals. I grew up watching Bondra and Oates and it helped to forge an important lasting bond between my father and me. I used to play hockey at Piney Orchard and would sometimes take to the ice with the Chesapeake Chiefs after a Caps practice. I thought it was the greatest thing that I practiced on the same sheet of ice as my hockey heroes. When I was 15 my father spent nearly a week's pay to get me an autographed Oates game stick at a rink auction; the stick still hangs on my wall at home. At age 17 I enlisted in the U.S. Army where I have served for the last 11 years. My first duty assignment was Germany where I often set my alarm for 1 am so I could catch the Capitals on a terrible audio feed. I continued to follow the Caps during my first deployment to Iraq in 2003 but had no TV or internet so I received most of the highlights from home. After Germany I served in Oklahoma, Hawaii, and again in Iraq where it was a continuous struggle to follow Caps games. My father, a Vietnam-era disabled vet, nearly died and was in terrible health during this time, and the Caps remained something positive we could still talk about on our long distance phone calls. In 2010 I was reassigned to my current duty station at Fort Lee VA where I reside with my wife and two children. I play ice hockey regularly now in Richmond and have taught my 6 year old son Andy to play. He has gotten big into the Caps this season and we have had the privilege of going to two regular season games since moving to Virginia. I don't miss watching a game with my son, much like my father with me, and I will miss being able to watch them on local television when the Military moves me again this summer.