Canadian police: Fatalities after bus crash involving junior hockey league team

08 April, 2018, 02:44 | Author: Elena Meyer
  • RCMP have confirmed fatalities and a 'number of injuries' in an accident involving a hockey team bus in Saskatchewan

The Humboldt Broncos were on their way to play a semifinal game against the Nipawin Hawks when the collision occurred.

The Humboldt Broncos of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League were involved in a horrific accident early Saturday morning after a truck reportedly t-boned the side of the team bus.

Tributes poured in online for father of two and former coach of the North Peace Navigators who was described as an wonderful mentor to young players.

Canadiens defenceman Brett Lernout played 2 1/2 seasons in the WHL for the Swift Current Broncos, a team that was touched by tragedy when four players were killed in a bus crash in 1986.

"You start recalling the bus rides that you took across Canada to play hockey games - about all the junior players that are still traveling by bus in Canada and the United States, " Giles said.

STARS Air Ambulance confirmed it sent three helicopters to the scene.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tweeted his support for Humboldt.

Those involved with hockey - especially at the junior level - brought up the bus rides the players and staff embark on on a daily basis.

The Broncos, like other teams in the league, attract players from different parts of Canada who stay with host families during the hockey season, the team's website said. The crash sent shockwaves through the team's small hometown and a country united by the national sport.

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A GoFundMe page has been set up to collect donations for the families of the victims and had already raised over $336,000 by Saturday morning.

Members of the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team are shown in a photo posted to the team Twitter feed, a href='https://postmediamontrealgazette2.wordpress.com/mentions//'; class='mention mention-highlight' span class='mentions-prefix' @ /span /a HumboldtBroncos on March 24, 2018 after a playoff win over the Melfort Mustangs.

At the news conference, Garinger noted that the loss of life will be felt across Canada - and by the players' host families as well.

The team's president, who was not on the bus at the time, said it was the hardest day of his life after hearing of the tragedy.

Coach Darcy Haugan, captain Logan Schatz, 20, and players Adam Herold, 16, Logan Hunter, 18, Jaxon Joseph, 20, and Stephen Wack, 21 as well as play-by-play radio announcer Tyler Bieber, who was travelling with the team, has also been confirmed dead. It collided with a transport truck about 30 kilometres north of community of Tisdale. "I am so sad for all of the teammates and I am losing my mind". It's not clear so far how many players were killed.

"Lots of them are waiting for information", he said. "I've got four other kids and they're here, which is nice". That community and the other small communities around Saskatchewan, they live for hockey, and they drive that team and players love living there, and I speak from experience. "The news is truly heartbreaking, not only for the entire hockey world, but for an entire community of parents, family and friends".

"We talked to him, but he said he couldn't feel his lower extremities so I don't know what's going on", she said. "We know that the coroner and their office need to do their work and let families know".

Kevin Henry, a coach who runs a hockey school in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, said people there are in shock.

Even NHL players like the Toronto Maple Leafs' Morgan Rielly, who spent multiple years in Wilcox, Sask., and Moose Jaw, Sask., have fond memories have memories of the billeting system as well.

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