Haley Elli Matesich becomes the first baby in the Sabres Newborn Program.

Wednesday, 01.02.2013 / 11:05 AM
Kevin Snow  - Sabres.com (@kwsnow)

With the first pick in the 2013 Newborn Entry Draft, the Buffalo Sabres selected … Haley Elli Matesich.

Haley was the first baby born in Buffalo on January 1, entering the world at 12:07 a.m. on Tuesday at Women and Children’s Hospital, making proud parents of Danielle and Mark Matesich. Checking in at eight pounds, three ounces and 19 inches long, Haley also became the first member of the Buffalo Sabres Newborn Program.

Starting Tuesday, the Sabres and Kaleida Health began working together to implement the Buffalo Sabres Newborn Program at two area hospitals. As part of the program, all newborn babies born at Millard Fillmore Suburban and the Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo in 2013 will receive a special Buffalo Sabres baby blanket and a certificate from Sabres owner Terry Pegula.

The program was developed by Terry and Kim Pegula, along with Sabres President Ted Black, as a way to welcome all new members of the Sabres family to the Western New York community.

“Fandom in Buffalo is something that runs much deeper than in most other places,” said Black. “Even from birth, people here know that hockey and the Sabres are a part of life. This program is a way for us to welcome the newest members of our community and hopefully plant the seed of passion that will grow into a lifetime of embracing the game that we all love so deeply here in Buffalo.”

The baby blankets are a Sabres-inspired yellow with the team’s logo and “We Live Hockey” word mark on the back of the hooded blanket. There is also a number “13” to signify the year, and Kaleida Health’s “Buffalo Baby” logo. In addition to the blanket, each baby will also receive a “Future First-Round Pick” certificate. The certificates feature the Sabres and Kaleida Health logos, space to fill out the baby’s birth information (name, height, weight, time and place of birth), and Terry Pegula’s signature.

“Over 6,000 babies will be born at Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital and the Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo in 2013,” explained James R. Kaskie, the president and CEO of Kaleida Health. “This is a great way to welcome each and every one of them to our team. We are proud to partner with the Buffalo Sabres on this great community initiative.”

Kaleida Health is the largest healthcare provider in Western New York, serving eight counties in the region. They have two locations that specialize in pregnancy care and child delivery: Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital and Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo.

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