Cup to Broncos crash site: & # 39; We thought we would bring Stanley to them & # 39;

HUMBOLDT, Sask. – A small town in Saskatchewan devastated by a fatal bus accident involving the junior hockey team, welcomed a trophy on Friday that fans undoubtedly hoped would ever be hoisted by one of their boys.

Chandler Stephenson, a forerunner of NHL champion Washington Capitals, brought the Stanley Cup to Humboldt to recognize the strength and resilience of the community after the April crash that killed 16 people – 10 of them.

But a quiet visit to the motorway junction in the countryside where the Broncos team bus and a transport truck attacked each other, could mean the most.

A tweet by Philip Pritchard, official holder of the trophy, shows the cup in the middle of an improvised monument consisting of hockey sticks, crosses, flowers and flags.

"While their Stanley Cup dreams remained unfulfilled, we thought we would bring Stanley to them," read Pritchard's tweet.

"That means so much to me," said Kaleb Dahlgren, one of the 13 players who survived. "I know that people who have lost their lives really appreciate that, I appreciate it too.

"It's nice to honor that and it really means a lot."

Some of the survivors came together privately with Stephenson before the cup was presented to the public.

"It's difficult … listening to some of the parents," he said afterwards. "It's hard to talk to them (too) … give your condolences.

"Nothing can replace a life, so try to help as much as possible and that is what this day is about."

Stephenson, originally from Saskatoon and with a green "Humboldt Strong" T-shirt, was escorted by the RCMP as he carried the cup to the Humboldt & # 39; s Elgar Petersen Arena.

More than 3,500 people played a selection of different games and activities and there was a gigantic blow-up Broncos sweater outside the ice rink.

Stephenson was joined by more than a dozen current and former professional players for Humboldt Hockey Day.

It was organized by the National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players Association to celebrate the city with 6,000.

Two of Stephenson's friends – Dahlgren and Brayden Camrud – were among the survivors.

Dahlgren said he heard from Stephenson shortly after Washington defeated the Vegas Golden Knights last spring to win the Cup for the first time.

"When Chandler won the thing, the first thing he texted was:" You come with me to Humboldt, "and exactly there I thought:" Okay, let's do this, Chandler. "

"So being here and having this celebration and help, Humboldt is something special," Dahlgren said. "That is very nice of Chandler and everyone who comes from the NHL.

"Everyone in the community loves this and this will surely be a great event."

Chris Joseph, whose son Jaxon died, said that it was difficult to get back on the ice rink, but he is happy that the Broncos are advancing. Training camp for the 2018-1919 season is this weekend.

"I'm glad that the Broncos … are ready to play," said Joseph. "I think it's a big step for the city, I think it's a big step for the country, it's a big step for hockey."

Ethan Vanallen, a 14-year-old from Tisdale, Sask., Wore a Broncos shirt and said it was nice to see all the support.

"What has happened is … very sad," Vanallen said. "So (I) wanted to come (just) here to support it."

The Broncos were on their way to a Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League play-off game in Tisdale when the crash took place on 6 April.

Jaskirat Singh Sidhu, who controlled the truck, was not injured.

He is charged with 16 counts of dangerous driving which causes death and 13 counts of dangerous driving bodily injury.

RCMP has said that they will not release details of the investigation or that they think happened. The only thing that the Mounties have said so far is that the truck was at the crossroads when the collision took place.

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