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The Journal Gazette

  • Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette Komets equipment manager Aaron Franke, left, watches the game from the bench at Memorial Coliseum on Wednesday.

Monday, January 21, 2019 5:40 pm

Frankes enjoying All-Star Classic

JUSTIN A. COHN | The Journal Gazette

TOLEDO, Ohio -- Justin Hodgman may be playing in the ECHL’s All-Star Classic, but he’s not the only person representing the Komets at the Huntington Center.

I just caught up with equipment managers Joe and Aaron Franke, the father-son team that are tending to the locker rooms of the Western and Eastern Conference.

“We got some goodies, we got some really nice goodies,” joked Joe Franke, looking at the blue all-star warm-ups they were wearing. “But it’s been so much fun. We got to see so many people, like (former Komets coach Greg Puhalski), Rick Judson, Kelly Miller. So many of the guys that we had in Fort Wayne we’ve been able to reminisce with and it was awesome.”

Joe, 58, and Aaron, 34, were able to enjoy themselves a little bit more than Dave Aleo, the equipment manager of the host Toledo Walleye. The 3-on-3 tournament features two Walleye teams.

“It’s been a breeze for us actually. If we were at home, it would be a lot more work,” Aaron Franke said, adding that Aleo had to tend to most things like laundry, work on helmets and name changes to jerseys.

The Classic starts at 7 p.m. on NHL Network.

jcohn@jg.net