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Rangers donate $5K to support AP hockey writer Ira Podell

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The Rangers step up in support of veteran hockey writer Ira Podell.Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images

The Rangers step up in support of veteran hockey writer Ira Podell.

The Rangers made the grandest of classy gestures on Friday.

The team donated $ 5,000 to the GoFundMe.com account raising money for Associated Press sports writer Ira Podell, a beloved mainstay on press row at the Garden until last spring when a brain tumor, surgery and subsequent stroke left him fighting for his life.

Podell now is fighting for normalcy at a facility in South Jersey. As his family wrote, “It’s so hard to recognize the steps forward since they occur so slowly. But thanks to the love of family and friends, and dedication of amazing doctors, nurses and therapists, Ira is moving in the right direction.”

The family is raising money to install special facilities for Podell to live and receive care at home, so they set their fundraising goal at $ 30,000 when they created the website on Sunday. Just five days later, with Podell’s fellow members of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association turning out in droves and support from the Rangers, Podell’s family had raised $ 30,763 as of 3:45 p.m.

The NHL Players’ Association also donated $ 2,000 with the message: “The players and staff of the NHLPA are thinking about you Ira and wishing you all the best in your recovery.”

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