|A fan in Swift Current puts up a sign to support the Humboldt Broncos.|
On April 6, the bus carrying the Broncos to play a Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League playoff game in Nipawin was involved in a collision with a semi-truck just north of Tisdale. The unthinkable event resulted in the deaths of 10 Broncos players including captain Logan Schatz, Adam Herold, Conner Lukan, Evan Thomas, Jacob Leicht, Jaxon Joseph, Logan Boulet, Logan Hunter, Stephen Wack or Parker Tobin.
Head coach and general manager Darcy Haugen, assistant coach Mark Cross, play-by-play voice Tyler Bieber, stats expert Brody Hinz, athletic therapist Dayna Brons and bus driver Glen Doerksen were all among the total of 16 people who were killed.
The 13 survivors from the bus all sustained injuries, and as of the last update from the Saskatchewan Health Authority on Tuesday, nine are still in hospital including two in critical condition.
|The Humboldt Broncos logo set for the vigil held on April 8.|
The depth of this tragedy is hard to comprehend and the sorrow the family and friends have to go through is unimaginable. On the other end of the roller-coaster, the way the province of Saskatchewan, Canada as a country and people I dare say from around the world have united to support all those effected has shown a warmth people can have for each other on a scale that likely has never been seen.
A GoFundMe campaign started by Humboldt residents Sylvie Kellington and Caitlin Hergott in the immediate aftermath of the accident had originally the small goal of raising funds to cover parking costs for the families visiting hospitals. The campaign is slated to wrap up today at 11:59 p.m. Saskatchewan time has surpassed $15.1-million with donations coming from over 141,900 individuals and entities.
|A display supporting the Humboldt Broncos in a Saskatchewan farm yard.|
Fundraisers and donations outside of the GoFundMe campaign will go to the newly established Humboldt Strong Community Foundation. Its mission will be to support the Humboldt players, employees, families and volunteers as well as first responders, emergency personnel, teams, athletes, organizations and communities affected by the accident and its aftermath.
On April 27 at 7 p.m., a fundraising concert will be held at SaskTel Centre featuring high profile country music singers Dallas Smith, Jess Moskaluke, Brett Kissel, Gord Bamford, Chad Brownlee and the Hunter Brothers. Tickets for the concert are $65. The show is being run by the Country Thunder Music Festival, which runs the annual music festival in Craven, Sask.
|#SticksOutForHumboldt at Swift Current Broncos bus crash memorial.|
In Canada, the majority of people have traveled by bus to go play in a sporting event or are connected to someone who does travel to participate a sporting event by bus.
If you travel the highways in Saskatchewan at the moment, you will inevitably find a sign offering support for the Humboldt Broncos. It seems like we have all left our #StickOutForHumboldt at some time over the past 12 days. That was a moment that gained its traction from Humboldt product and current play-by-play voice of the NHL’s Winnipeg Jets Brian Munz posting that exact gesture on social media.
The SJHL resumed its playoffs with the Hawks taking on the Estevan Bruins in the best-of-seven league championship series to capture the Canalta Cup. The Hawks lead the series 2-1, and the first three contests have allowed people to continue to pour out their hearts for the Broncos and relish in celebrating the game.
|A store front window in downtown Swift Current.|
The Swift Current bus flew off the highway having hit a patch of black ice shortly after leaving town on route to a road game in Regina to play the Pats.
Since that time, Swift Current, a small city of just over 16,600 people, has come a long way and still continues on an uncharted path on a lifetime of healing. A lot of the characteristics of Swift Current are similar to Humboldt, which has a population of about 6,000, in that both places are close knit farming communities with big loyalties to their junior hockey teams.
|A sign at the Innovation Credit Union i-Plex in Swift Current.|
Last weekend, the sticks were out for Humboldt at the Swift Current Broncos bus crash memorial.
Inside of Swift Current and the Innovation Credit Union i-Plex during playoff games for the WHL’s Broncos, you didn’t have to look far to see a sign of support for Humboldt and the commonalities the two Broncos teams share.
In Moose Jaw, a local company that prints T-shirts has been going overtime producing T-shirts to support the Humboldt Broncos and raising fund to help those involved with the Humboldt bus accident.
It is easy to encounter a sign advertising Thursday’s benefit game in Moose Jaw to support the Humboldt Broncos set for 7:30 p.m. at Mosaic Place. The game is being played in the memory of deceased Humboldt player Evan Thomas, whose father Scott played for the WHL’s Moose Jaw Warriors from 1987 to 1991.
Evan played midget AAA hockey from 2015 to 2017 for the
Moose Jaw Generals.
|A sign for Humboldt Broncos benefit game in Moose Jaw on Thursday.|
Saskatoon Blades play-by-play voice Les Lazaruk has express interest in calling a Humboldt Broncos game for free next season, and his idea is gaining support from a tonne of other broadcasters.
Longer form positive and reflective style articles have been written by Sports Illustrated and Maclean’s.
The ways to honour, raise funds and rally around the Humboldt Broncos keeps going and going. It is great to see, because the challenges everyone will face going forward will only be met and overcome over the longer term.
In recent days, a number of funerals were held for those that died in the Humboldt bus accident providing another chance for people to rally together to support each other.
|A Humboldt Broncos memorial at city hall in Saskatoon.|
During a dark time, words can’t describe how uplifting it has been to see everyone rally around the Humboldt Broncos. The hashtag phrases #BroncosStrong and #HumboldtStrong are now ingrained in our vocabulary.
|This sign in Moose Jaw says it all.|
If you have any comments you would like to pass along about this post, feel free to email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Drinnan’s “The boys grab some sticks and win a game” article can be found right here.
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