Singer Behind 1,000 Colorado Avalanche National Anthems Watches Stanley Cup Final From Around The Globe – CBS Denver

DENVER (CBS4) – One of the most enduring plays of the Colorado Avalanche franchise will not compete in the Stanley Cup Finals. Legendary national anthem singer Jake Schroeder has performed more than 1,000 times before Avalanche audiences, but as a historic season comes to a close, Schroeder is in France.

(Image credit: CBS)

“The people who go to these games have treated me so well and are so nice. It’s just, I think that’s what I’m going to miss the most is that people are so nice,” Schroeder said last week, before leaving for his new job as head of a nonprofit.

Singing the national anthem began as a hobby in 1985 when Schroeder first sang before a Denver Nuggets game. For almost 40 years he has been at the beginning of many events. It was in the late ’90s that he became a fixture before Avs games. A song that created a remarkable bond between him and his late father.

“The first year I missed a few more than normal, I think, and after that I pretty much did all but one or two a year. and there were some years in it that we didn’t miss,” he says. “It’s kind of crazy considering how many years that goes back.”

Schroeder was in November honored after his 1000th appearance. A job that paid nothing, but was a hobby he didn’t want to give up.

“You get two spots for the game and that was just a thrill going to the game. The 2001 Stanley Cup run was pretty cool because a lot of these guys were my peers, they were my age,” Schroeder said. “Just these regular season games (Red) Wings-Avs. You got up at 6 a.m. and you were up at 1 p.m. for the game.”

(Image credit: CBS)

As the Avalanche team advances to their first Stanley Cup final in decades, Schroeder won’t be taking to the ice to sing. Since the team he loves could write a fairytale ending, he couldn’t delay starting the next chapter of his life.

“I’ve completed my course and I’m proud of it,” said Schroeder.

He now directs the D-Day Leadership Academy, an organization dedicated to bringing students to Normandy, France for a comprehensive experience in sacrifice, honor and leadership.

“Travelling and learning about very different cultures is really, really good for everyone,” he said. “I really want to change as much as possible in the world.”

Although the timing didn’t work out for Schroeder to watch the Avs complete their mission, he knows he made the right choice with no regrets.

(Image credit: Colorado Avalanche)

“It’s all a gift. It’s truly an incredible blessing for me to be able to do this for as long as I’ve done it. and it was so much fun to be there and be a part of it,” he said.

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