KALAMAZOO, MI – The Kalamazoo Wings are deeply saddened to learn about the passing of former team owner and community leader Martha Parfet at the age of 91.
Martha and her husband Ted were pivotal in the growth of hockey in the Kalamazoo area for three decades. As owners of the Kalamazoo Wings from 1974-2000, and 2002-06, the Parfets pioneered the development of both professional and youth hockey in the region.
Below is an official statement from current Kalamazoo Wings owners, Bill Johnston and Ronda Stryker:
“On behalf of the Kalamazoo Wings hockey club and Stadium Management Corporation, we want to express our profound sadness at the announcement of the death of Martha Parfet. To the Parfet family- we want to express our sincere and heartfelt condolences.
“During her lifetime, Martha served in leadership roles of nearly every Kalamazoo cultural institution, advocated on their behalf and challenged them to do more. In 1974, Ted and Martha Parfet brought professional hockey to Kalamazoo by building the now Wings Event Center and establishing the K-Wings Hockey Club. For three decades, Martha was a fierce and loyal owner. But most of all, she was a great fan of K-Wings hockey.
“Many people recall with fondness the many joyful stories that Martha would share with great laughter about the road trips that she and Ted would take on the team bus to away games. Many others have shared their memories of the kind and gentle soul, who always had time for them when they stopped and talked with her at her seat in section eight at Wings Stadium.
“Like many other institutions in Kalamazoo, the Kalamazoo Wings hockey organization lost a valued and dear friend when Martha passed away. She will be missed.”