At the start of the 2018-19 season, over 120 member clubs of the Canadian Junior A Hockey League received a memorial banner to hang in their rinks.
The banner was green and gold, the Humboldt Broncos colours. On the banner were the words We Play for Them, surrounded by 16 gold stars. On the bottom of the banner was, Always Remembered, April 6, 2018.
The banner itself was in tribute to the Humboldt Broncos. The 16 stars are to remind us of the 16 individuals that lost their lives, so tragically, on April 6.
Our banner hung at the Zamboni end of the rink under the Taphouse Party Zone. Almost two months ago, I realized the banner was missing. Different people have been asked about the banner but it has yet to be found.
That is not just a banner. Two of the stars on that banner have ties to the Power Dodge Estevan Bruins organization. One star, Darcy Haugan, played a year of junior hockey here and then returned from 2000-2003 as an assistant coach.
Another star, Mark Cross, played for the Bruins from 2008-2011. They both were huge contributors to the organization on and off the ice.
Those two stars represented two special men. When Darcy was here, he lived with Ed and Gail Chilman. They forged an incredibly tight relationship that only grew and matured over the years. That bond was broken when Darcy passed April 6 while travelling to a playoff game in Nipawin.
Mark lived with Ken Sali and myself for the three years he played here. We were always proud of him and were among his biggest fans. We also maintained a relationship that was taken away April 6. A shining star gone way too soon.
For our two families, at least, that banner holds a personal connection. Someone has to know where it is. Let’s get it back where it belongs.