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

West Shore residents hold forum to voice frustration with Goldstream Park homeless camp

Some 200 residents fill local pub pointing fingers, claiming crime on the rise, safety at risk

Monterey Centre overflows at Oak Bay’s first 2018 all-candidates meeting

Large hall could not contain the abundant resident turnout

Burn survivor camp an ‘eye-opening experience’ for Langford firefighter

Burn Fund also provides housing for firefighters, families for treatment at the Burn Fund Centre

Two to hospital after University of Victoria sailing mishap

Wind gusts capsize boat of recreational club sailors

City stamps rezoning approval for Merridale Cidery expansion in Victoria

Owner expects doors open by fall 2019 in Dockside Green neighbourhood

Environment Canada confirms Ottawa area hit by two tornadoes Friday

At one point more than 200,000 hydro customers were blacked out

5 things to do this weekend in and around Greater Victoria

Sooke Apple Fest returns, Saanich lights up with lantern festival and anarchists unite for downtown book fair

Whitecaps see playoff dreams fade after 2-1 loss to FC Dallas

Goal in 87th minute seals Vancouver’s fate

B.C. students send books to displaced students of Hornby Island school fire

Maple Ridge elementary school teacher says students learned about acts of kindness

Trump drains oxygen from Trudeau foreign policy with PM, Freeland bound for UN

A lot has changed since the Liberals came to power in Canada in 2015

Emergency crews investigate small sulphuric acid spill in Kootenays

IRM states a small volume of less than one cup and three dime-sized drips were leaked from carrier

Victoria resident barred from trading securities for fraud

Larry Keith Davis used money from an investor to pay personal bills

Most Read