Chapter 490 Military Order of the Purple Heart has announced the Utica Comets will be honored as the first Purple Heart Hockey Club in the country.

The Comets are being recognized for their commitment to honoring veterans and the military, including holding numerous military appreciation nights and raising money for the local CNY Veteran's Outreach Center.

They'll join a list of Purple Heart sports teams that includes the Kansas City Royals, Carolina Panthers, Charlotte Hornets and Texas Rangers.

"In all my years in the sport of hockey, this is by far the biggest honor for not just the organization, but for me personally," said Comets President Rob Esche. "The military has always been near and dear to me, with numerous relatives of mine serving throughout their lives, and I will never forget their sacrifices so that us athletes can hit the ice or field every day."

The Comets will be hosting a special Military Night celebration when they take on the Hartford Wolfpack on November 9th at the Adirondack Bank Center.

The Comets will play in black camo and purple jerseys.

Some of the jerseys will be auctioned off after the game, with all proceeds benefitting the CNY Veterans Outreach Center.

Andrew Derminio, WIBX