MOvember is an annual event that symbolizes growing a mustache to raise awareness about men’s health issues like prostate cancer, testicular cancer and mental health issues, such as depression. What started in Australia in 2003 has blossomed into one of the biggest and most widely known fundraisers for men’s health.
Like breast cancer awareness, it’s become a global movement. By 2030, the MOvember Foundation vows to reduce the number of men dying prematurely by 25%. MOvember’s mantra is “for 30 days, grow your ‘mo and use it to raise funds for men’s health.” 
This year, the Hilton Cadets varsity ice hockey team decided to take on this cause for a specific reason.
“At the high school level, especially in Hilton, our educational-based philosophy toward athletics helps our student-athletes realize that there is a world outside of themselves,” coach Chris Monfiletto said. “It is imperative that they find every opportunity to give back to the community and their ‘family’ as much as possible.”
This past summer, a member of the Hilton hockey family, Phil DeGrandis, unexpectedly died.
“This individual was not only a great person and supporter, but integral to the success of our family,” Monfiletto said. “This individual would do anything that was asked of him in support of our players and always did so with a smile on his face. This loss shook everybody in the Hilton hockey family, the Hilton community and the hockey community to its core.”
Derek Zajac, father of senior player and captain John Zajac, suggested the team honor DeGrandis’ memory and the memory of other men who died too soon by participating in MOvember to raise awareness of men’s health issues.
“The student-athletes that are in the varsity ice hockey program are outstanding young men, and they have accepted this challenge with the utmost pride and character,” Monfiletto said. “Our original goal was to raise $1,000, but that number was surpassed rather quickly.”
To date, the team has raised over $3,600.
“This activity has made these young men of the varsity ice hockey program recognize how much a group can accomplish when they work together for a common goal,” Monfiletto said.
The team recently gathered at Merton Williams Middle School for a high-intensity workout with the Greece Police SWAT team, led by Joelle Delgatti, in support of MOvember.