Former Olds Grizzlys Head Coach Discusses Humboldt Broncos Tragedy, Players With Links To Olds

An outpouring of sympathy continues to come in from across Canada following a tragic crash in Saskatchewan involving the bus for the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team. Former Old Grizzlys Head Coach Dana Lattery says instantly you relate to everyone involved in the horrific incident and numbing is the best way he can describe the feeling of hearing the horrible news.

The hockey community and the nation continue to morn in the wake of the tragic bus crash on Friday, April 6th involving the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League's Humboldt Broncos.

Fifteen members of the Broncos junior hockey club were killed when their team bus was T-boned by a tractor-trailer at an intersection on a rural highway north of Tisdale.

A GoFundMe page has -- as of Sunday evening -- raised $4.1-million dollars. Team president Kevin Garinger calls that figure staggering, and says they will ensure the money goes to the 14 survivors and the families of the dead.

Meantime, former Olds Grizzlys Head Coach Dana Lattery describes what went through his mind when he heard the terrible news.



He it is an incident that hits close to home because so many Canadians can relate to it.


Lattery says four players on Humboldt's roster this year had ties to Olds - that includes forward Derek Patter from Edmonton, goaltender Parker Tobin from Stony Plain, defenceman Ryan Straschnitzki from Airdrie and forward Graysen Cameron from Olds.


He says three of them - Straschnitzki, Patter and Cameron - survived the crash with varying levels of injuries.



Lattery says Patter and Tobin were both players the Olds Grizzlys recruited and got into a couple Alberta Junior Hockey League games in the 2015-2016 season. He notes that Straschnitzki came to their camps and was recruited before he chose to go play in Saskatchewan.

Cameron played Midget AA in Olds, Midget AAA in Red Deer and last year got into several playoff games with the HJHL's Mountain View Colts. This season the 18 year old from Olds had 5 goals and 8 points in 32 SJHL games with Humboldt.

Meantime, a spokesman for Saskatchewan's Ministry of Justice says all he can do is offer sincere apologies and condolences after a devastating mistake by the coroner's office.

The office mistook the body of Humboldt Broncos' goalie Parker Tobin for that of Xavier Labelle, who survived Friday's bus crash, but is among the injured.
Drew Wilby says family members were told about the mix-up last night and have been understanding under the circumstances.

He says identification of the 15 people who died has been challenging because the young men were of similar builds and had all dyed their hair blond to support the team's playoff run.
Parker Tobin was from Stony Plain and he was 18 years old and is now listed as one of the deceased from Friday's tragedy. Before going to Humboldt he played in the AJHL for Olds, Drayton Valley and Spruce Grove.
For those outside of the community of Humboldt who are seeking support in dealing with this tragedy, on Saturday the Humboldt Broncos tweeted to please contact your local mobile crisis or support centre.

(Contains content from the Canadian Press)


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