Rod Hurst stands next to a chair from the old Boston Garden at his collectibles shop soon to open in Coombs. The Colwood resident auctioned off the chair last weekend for $5,800 with the intention of donating the entire proceeds to the Humboldt Broncos hockey club, who lost players, coaches and other team staff in the tragic bus crash April 6. Photo contributed

Boston Garden chair nets $5,800 for Humboldt Broncos fund

Like many Canadians, West Shore resident Rod Hurst just wanted to help in some way

The overwhelming response to a GoFundMe page set up for the Humboldt Broncos hockey team and its related families has shown just how widespread the desire is in people to help in any way they can.

West Shore resident Rod Hurst is one of nearly 100,000 people who have donated or plan to donate to the fund, which as of late Tuesday was closing in on the $8 million mark.

“I’m like any other Canadian, I was touched and devastated by [news of the crash],” he said. “I’m a parent … that’s a light switch was turned off for all those kids that didn’t make it.”

People have been creative in the ways they’ve raised money for the cause. But Hurst’s donation has a direct hockey connection: last weekend he auctioned off a mounted arena seat from the old Boston Garden, a piece he had planned to display in his soon-to-open collectibles shop, Bear’s Den Trading Post in Coombs.

The auction raised $5,800 and the winning bidder was Rick Spray, who lives just outside Humboldt and has billeted Broncos players in past.

“I told him I’d like to come out and shake his hand,” said Hurst, who is personally delivering the refurbished relic to Spray at the Humboldt arena. “I was rooting for him to win it.”

As a career long-haul mover who’s driven roughly 200 trips across Canada, by his estimation, Hurst is very familiar with the risks of the road.

That experience was just one of the thoughts that went through his mind when he learned about the tragic bus crash involving the Humboldt Broncos hockey team and a transport truck.

“I see stuff all the time in my travels,” he said. “Sometimes I’m the first on the scene, it’s heart-wrenching thing to see … I’ve seen some pretty awful scenes where all I can do is comfort people and hold their hand knowing they’re not going to make it.”

Like many people whose children travel on sports teams, Hurst has felt the vague uneasiness watching his stepchildren head off on bus road trips. He feels for the families and friends of those lost and injured in the crash but has been impressed by the outpouring of support.

“I wish I could bring those people back, but I can’t,” he said. “But out of a bad thing has come a lot of good situations. People have bonded together.”

To donate to the GoFundMe campaign for the Humboldt Broncos, visit bit.ly/2GFiPCU.

editor@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Duncan Christian hosting Island girls A basketball championships

Five teams battle for two spots in provincials

LAKE FLASHBACK: Forest land sell-off, environmentalists a threat, and sewer system fix costly problem at L

TimberWest selling, a forest industry report scares locals, and sewage in the basement. Yikes!

Three men arrested after assault in Duncan

Victim suffered serious but non-life threatening injuries

Mary Lowther column: Growing combination for complete proteins

While we’re at it, why limit our gardens to “typical” crops?

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

Coming up in Cowichan: Bowl for Kids; Leaders of Tomorrow

Bowl for Kids Sake coming up in Cowichan Valley on March 3… Continue reading

Galchenyuk scores in OT as Coyotes edge Canucks 3-2

Vancouver manages single point as NHL playoff chase continues

B.C. legislature moving suspended staff controversy to outside review

Whale watching, Seattle Mariners trips billed as emergency preparedness, Speaker Darryl Plecas says

More people signing up for compulsory vaccines

Maple Ridge mom says public tired of hearing about measles

UPDATE: Man charged in stabbing of woman, off-duty cop outside B.C. elementary school

Manoj George, 49, is facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of assault with a weapon after the incident on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Federal fisheries minister calls for precautionary approach to fish farming

Government still reviewing Federal Court’s decision on PRV – Wilkinson

Why do zebras have stripes? Perhaps to dazzle away flies

Researchers from University of Bristol look into why zebras have stripes

Poll: More voters believe Canada doing worse under Trudeau government

22 per cent believed the country is doing better and 27 per cent said things are the same

Most Read