A Heartbreaking Hockey Funeral For The 43 Fallen

This is one the most heartbreaking events I have watched. I hope it is the last I will see and there is never an event that requires us to view another.

Categories: L.A. Kings News

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8 replies

  1. This was amazing. The only thing I wished they did differently was let the goalie go last and leave the puck at the top of the crease. Can’t ask for more and sort of feel like a douche saying that because of the circumstances but that’s just the way I’m wired, I guess. Either way, tragic event but this was incredible. Kudos to Minsk and the people involved. Excellent job.

  2. That was a very moving service, and a fitting tribute to the team. Now they just need to develop some travel safety standards so there never has to be another moving service to honor a fallen team like that.

  3. The next video was very heartbreaking and a very nice tribute in rememberence of those players.

  4. I am of the lucky enough to have been able to spend time following hockey throughout Europe. During this time and due to the nature of the way the game is played and followed over there I also have been able to meet and spend time getting to know several Eu players several of whom play or have played in the KHL.

    Three of these young men died in this horrible tragedy, one of them was Jan Marek. I thought I would take a minute to try and describe him to you so you might get to know him a little.

    Jan was born in the town of Jindřichův Hradec, Czechoslovakia, a mid sized industrial agricultural town of about 22 thousand people. Not unlike many places in that part of the world the people are hardy fun loving and hard working which describes Jan’s family perfectly.

    Jan started skating young and I remember asking him when he first started watching hockey and him telling me that it was all he remembered, “I am born to play hockey and want to play since I was too little to leave the house by myself”.

    That is sadly the one direct quote that I could find from him out of the many times we spoke but it describes the way he saw himself in my opinion.

    I first met him when he was 16 and just starting out on his hockey career in earnest and remember him being the guy who was sort of the center of attention out of his peers. His quick smile and open way just sort of invited you into wanting to meet the kid.

    My first memory of him as a hockey player was this (taken from my notes at the time) “Fast kid, good balance, faster than I thought he would be, follows the play well, great in the corner, man amoung boys, needs positional help through neutral zone and is fidgity at the point, really good skater, nice shot, big shot, average passer needs work but could play in the NHL in time with work, has the tools”.

    Jan spent the next several years proving me right and eventually earned himself the attention of a few NHL scouts seeing him drafted by the New York Rangers and finally becoming the property of the Los Angeles Kings.

    This past Christmas we exchanged emails and he spoke of finally realizing that his dreams of playing in the NHL were behind him but how happy he was to be playing where he was. He had figured things out and hoped to become a coach for a young mens team.

    He was a great kid who played the game of hockey with love and dedication and was one of us even if he never skated in a Kings uniform he will always be a King to the people who knew him.

    He would be the first to call me a name and laugh at what I have written so feel free to do so yourselves, he was that kind of kid.

  5. Absolutely Crushing.. totally breaking my heart.. so unbelieveably sad!

  6. Northstar,
    Appreciate the personal story. I don’t know any of these players personally, but feel a loss for them anyways. Demitra, I have had the pleasure of seeing play in a Kings uniform, and I consider myself lucky now to say I have now. I don’t want to sound too blubbery, but I am being sincere, thank you.

  7. My pleasure even though life would be better if I had shared it while he were around. I am thinking of asking if I can write about some of the people/players I know and have known around the game of hockey for the website here. Instead of posthumously writing about them maybe I can find a way to write something about them while they are around?

    Oh well, thank you for the kind words, he was a great kid like many who have gone before him he will be missed.


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