A tragic moment underscored the trivial nature of hockey on Friday, as Luke Richardson’s 14-year-old daughter Daron committed suicide.
It’s obvious that the moment was devastating, but the Richardson family hopes to wring a few positives out of a tragic situation. For one thing, The Canadian Press reports that the family decided to donate Daron’s organs to help others live. Apparently four different people benefited from that decision.
Moving further, the family used their daughter’s death to increase awareness of teenage suicide. They were courageously open about the details of their daughter’s death and decided to make the funeral public.
The public ceremony drew a crowd of about 5,600, including more than 100 NHL alumni, to the suburban hockey rink on a blustery, wet weekday morning,
Richardson is a former defenceman who played 21 seasons in the NHL with six different teams and those grieving with the family included Paul Coffey, Shayne Corson, Wendel Clark, Doug Gilmour, Ron Hextall, Bill Ranford and a host of other former NHL stars. A teary Garry Galley was the master of ceremonies.
The entire Senators hockey club abbreviated a four-game road trip to return home for the ceremony and flew out immediately afterward for a game Wednesday night against the Carolina Hurricanes.
For video of the ceremony, click here. The CP reports that people make donations to the Royal Ottawa Health Foundation’s Youth Program rather than sending forwards in honor of Daron.