WINDSOR -- An inaugural fundraiser for cancer research in Windsor-Essex far exceeded expectations.

Jeff Casey, a cancer survivor and director of the Play For a Cure hockey tournament, announced Wednesday that nearly $285,000 from the tournament.

“That is an awesome amount and it tells me that our community cares about cancer research," said Casey.

Part of the money will go to the Cancer Research Incentive Fund at the University of Windsor.

It will support cancer research scholars in their efforts to acquire national funding and build research programs.

Some of the proceeds will also help fund new and innovative clinical cancer research.

The inaugural event included former NHLer’s Adam Graves, Marty McSorley, Marty Turco, Dennis Maruk, Todd Warriner, John Ogrodnick, Dave McLIwain and Tim Taylor along with the Detroit Red Wings alumni team.

Casey hopes to raise even more money to support residents fighting cancer.

Next year’s event is planned for March 26 and 27, 2020 at Caesars Windsor and the Vollmer Complex in LaSalle.