Mr. Speaker, as a former Junior A hockey coach and the father of a Quebec Major Junior Hockey League graduate, I can speak first-hand to the near sanctity of the team bus. Aspiring young Canadians spend days, weekends, even weeks on what serves as the team's rec room, lunchroom, bedroom, and library. It is their sanctuary. However, when the bus pulls out of the home rink parking lot, parents and billets alike think more in terms of “I hope the team gets a win and brings back some points.” I know I can never recall thinking, “I hope they all make it back.”
That unspoken confidence in the team bus has been shattered, and the collective heart of a hockey nation has been broken. We mourn together.
We know that the first responders, who inherently and willingly accepted a high degree of danger and risk when they signed on to the job, could never have imagined the horror and tragedy of that night.
The Humboldt Broncos website posted, “They woke up that morning with hopes to win the game but instead they united a nation.”
To the family and friends of all involved, know that our country shares your grief, today and always.