Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Rest In Peace "Cotton Candy Man"

By now you have all heard the sad news.

Picture courtesy of PPG
If you've ever gone to a Pens game, you probably became pretty familiar with a particular vendor sprinting up and down the concrete steps of the Igloo pedalling cotton candy.  He is known by many nicknames depending on which Pittsburgh sports event you attended (I've always known him as the "cotton candy man," Steelers fans know him as the "Coke-here guy," and Bucs fans called him "lemonade man").  His real name is Kenneth (Kenny) D. Geidel and, unfortunately because of his recent death, yesterday was the first time I actually learned his real name and the fact that he had a wife and four children.  He was a husband, brother, and grandfather.  He was just a regular guy.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporter Dejan Kovacevic wrote a really nice article / obituary that honors Mr. Geidel and is featured in today's paper.  According to the PPG, Mr. Geidel fell ill on Sunday while working at the Bucs game and died the next day due to complications with an intestinal infection.

David Morehouse, Penguins CEO and president, had this to say (click HERE to read the brief article posted on the Pens webpage):

“Ken provided great service to our fans and was part of the fabric of a Penguins game at Mellon Arena or CONSOL Energy Center,” said David Morehouse, CEO and president of the Penguins. “The history of Pittsburgh sports is unique because it includes not just great players and coaches, but also memorable vendors and ushers. Ken was part of that history. We extend our deepest sympathy to his family.”
To say he was unique is a little bit of an understatement.  His style of selling cotton candy (and other merchandise at the Bucs and Steelers games) was no doubt what made him stand out.  "Cotton candy heeeeeeeere!"

He will truly be missed among Pittsburgh sports fans and there's no doubt that a void will be felt the next time any of us attend a Bucs, Pens, or Steelers game - he definitely added to the entire game atmosphere and your experience attending any sporting event in Pittsburgh.  He will forever be a part of Pittsburgh sports history.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the entire Geidel family.  Rest in peace, Mr. Geidel (I will fondly remember you as the "cotton candy man," but I'm glad to know your name).

1 comment:

dreamofmyfacex3 said...

I went to the Bucs game Monday night, and asked my group of friends where he was since we had not heard him shouting "LEMONADE HEEREE!". I was saddened to find out the news yesterday. Definitely won't be the same attending games; he made the games more entertaining and was always happy to be there.