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Hawks Singer Jim Cornelison Finds a Quiet Place Before Belting Out Anthem

By Justin Breen | June 15, 2015 11:48am
 Anthem singer Jim Cornelison (right) is pumped for Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final.
Anthem singer Jim Cornelison (right) is pumped for Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final.
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Chicago Blackhawks

CHICAGO — Jim Cornelison can't wait to belt the national anthem for Monday night's Blackhawks-Lightning game — Chicago's chance to clinch the Stanley Cup for the first time on home ice since 1938.

"It will be crazy, over-the-top loud," Cornelison said of the expected atmosphere of Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final at United Center. "It's great to be a part of it."

The Blackhawks last won the NHL title in Chicago on April 12, 1938 — more than 77 years ago. Their last three titles — against Detroit, Philadelphia and Boston — were won on the road in 1961, 2010 and 2013, respectively.

"What's different is winning it here would make it feel all brand new again," said Cornelison, of Lakeview. "If we win it on the road, I know what that looks like. Winning here in our own stadium, where everyone will be over-the-top excited, it will be excited — if we get it done."

Jim Cornelison sings the anthem during the 2013 Stanley Cup Finals:

Cornelison said he plans to get to the game a bit earlier than usual. He'll spend most of the pregame near the top of the UC relaxing in the same room as organist Frank Pellico.

"I want to be in a calm, settled place," Cornelison said. "Having too many people around throws you off your game. Frank is the only one [in that room]; he does his job, and I do mine."

So, where will this one rank for Cornelison?

"It’s huge, but so is the 'Colbert Show', so is 9-11-11 Bears game or Stadium Series or Winter Classic or Ryder Cup closing ceremonies. How would you rank that?"

Cornelison said he doesn't know who will join him on the ice during the anthem, but he wouldn't be surprised if there was a "high-ranking military member." He said he has several good friends coming to the game with him.

"I want to be able to share this with the people I care about, especially if we win it," Cornelison said.

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