Howe and Yzerman are helping demolish the Joe ... sort of

In a way, you can thank Jeff Curran's parents for the unique cranes outside the Joe Louis Arena.

The cranes are wrapped with the "sweaters" of Gordie Howe and Steve Yzerman, iconic Red Wings players.

Curran's parents became season ticket holders the year he was born. He grew up at the arena, watching Red Wings games with his family.

"It's in my DNA," said Curran.

The year the Joe was built, Curran was there too — working on construction to create the $57 million arena that hosted Red Wings games until 2017.

Now his company, J.J. Curran Crane Company in Detroit, is on hand to demolish the arena. 

J.J. Curran Crane

As a surprise for Curran, the wrecking company wrapped cranes in tribute to the two players. 

"You've got to pinch yourself, when you think we got to live through this era of history," said Curran. 

Demolition is a big job — 3,800 external panels, weighing about 350 pounds each will take three months to remove. 

"We won't forget, but time moves on," said Curran. "We're happy for the work we've done here and the memories we have."