The NHL Canes siren sounder: A former senator was first. A country singer will do it tonight.

One of the most exciting moments in a Carolina Hurricanes game is when the storm warning siren sounds.

It’s a tradition started by the Canes in the 2008-09 season: a celebrity, a season ticket holder, a corporate partner or a fan will hand-crank the siren as the team takes the ice before each period of the game.

And boy, does it get the crowd hyped up.

Tuesday night’s Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final against the Boston Bruins had Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly starting things off, followed by the Panthers’ running back Christian McCaffrey and former UNC (and Boston Celtics) basketball star Rasheed Wallace (who did a great job despite being on crutches).

For tonight’s Game 4, the Canes have lined up country music singer Luke Combs, a Shelby, N.C., native; Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley II; and Charlotte Hornets center Cody Zeller.

Here’s what happens: the “siren sounder” — whose identity is usually kept under wraps until the morning of the game — is introduced inside the stadium and that person then cranks the small but noisy cylinder, located in section 229 under the “Home of the Carolina Hurricanes” sign, for 10 to 15 seconds.

Hurricanes vice president Jon Chase told The News & Observer for an earlier story that former Hurricanes player Erik Cole cranked the siren before Game 6 in the first round against the Washington Capitals and used such force that he moved the siren 3 feet.

The first person to ever sound the siren might surprise you: former U.S. Senator Elizabeth Dole.

Here’s a list of some notable past siren sounders.

From the football universe

Super Bowl Champion Bill Cowher

Carolina Panther Luke Kuechly

Carolina Panther Christian McCaffrey

NC State and NFL great Torry Holt

Dallas Cowboy quarterback Tony Romo

Baltimore Raven Steve Smith

Chicago Bears (and NC State) quarterback Mike Glennon

Super Bowl champion and New England Patriot Joe Thuney

Seattle Seahawks (and NC State) quarterback and Super Bowl Champion Russell Wilson

Carolina Panthers Head Coach Ron Rivera

NC State football coach Dave Doeren

Duke football coach David Cutcliffe

From the basketball universe:

NC State basketball great David Thompson

UNC’s All-American basketball star Phil Ford

NC State basketball coach Kevin Keatts

NCCU basketball coach LeVelle Moton

UNC basketball great Lennie Rosenbluth

UNC basketball great Eric Montross

NC State basketball great Dereck Whittenburg

NC State basketball great Sidney Lowe

From the NASCAR universe:

Superstar driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Driver Ryan Newman

Driver Clint Bowyer

Driver Regan Smith

Driver Joey Logano

From the hockey universe:

Carolina Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon

Miracle on Ice member and 1980 Hockey Gold Medalist Jim Craig

NWHL player Alyssa Gagliardi

NWHL player Colleen Murphy

Carolina Hurricanes alum Glen Wesley

Carolina Hurricanes alum Bret Hedican

Carolina Hurricanes alum Erik Cole

Carolina Hurricanes alum Tuomo Ruutu

Carolina Hurricanes alum Nic Wallin

Carolina Hurricanes alum Sean Hill

Carolina Hurricanes alum Mike Commodore

Carolina Hurricanes alum Chad LaRose

Carolina Hurricanes alum Shane Willis

Carolina Hurricanes alum Jesse Boulerice

Carolina Hurricanes alum Craig Adams

Carolina Hurricanes alum Robert Kron

Carolina Hurricanes alum and “The Amazing Race” winner Bates Battaglia

Other sports greats:

Wrestling star Ric Flair

Olympic gold medalist swimmer Cullen Jones

Olympic gold medalist swimmer Ryan Held

Golfing legend and six-time major champion Nick Faldo

US Open golf champion Webb Simpson

US tennis player John Isner

MLB All-Star Chris Archer

MLB Rookie of the Year Finalist Trea Turner

2013 MLB American League Rookie of the Year Wil Myers

UNC soccer coach Anson Dorrance

From the non-sports world:

Musician, “American Idol” winner (and NC native) Scotty McCreery

Rapper (and NC native) Petey Pablo

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper

Former North Carolina Gov.Jim Hunt

Former U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole

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Brooke Cain is a North Carolina native who has worked at The News & Observer for more than 20 years. She writes about TV and local media for the Happiness is a Warm TV blog, and answers CuriousNC questions for readers.
Sports reporter Jonas Pope IV covers college recruiting, high school sports, NC Central and the ACC for the Herald-Sun and The News & Observer.