On April 6th of 2018, tragedy struck in Saskatchewan when a bus carrying the Humboldt Broncos, a junior ice hockey team, was struck by a tractor trailer at the intersection of Highways 35 and 335. The crash killed sixteen people and injured thirteen more, most of them teenagers.
As a way to honor the victims, chainsaw carving artist Ryan Villiers is carving a wood statue of an ice hockey player, which will serve as a memorial that will be displayed in Humboldt in the Elgar Petersen Arena. The finished statue will feature a hockey player in a shooting position with angle wings coming out of his back, and will incorporate an actual hockey stick from one of the players who passed away in the crash.
Timberland Supply is proud to be one of the sponsors of this project. We will use the space below to post updates about the project as it progresses, so check back often for information.
June 14th: GoFundMe page set up for memorial carving
Project leader Geoff Stewart has set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for the carving project. There is a goal of $8,000 which will help cover materials and other costs; any remaining money will be given as a donation to the Humboldt arena.
July 30th: Delays due to rotten logs overcome with help from project leader
The project got off to a rough start when the logs that Ryan was using for the carving turned out to be rotten. Luckily, project leader Geoff Stewart of Rig Distilleries from Nisku was able to get a supplier in Red Deer to produce laminated kiln dried logs (poplar) so there would be no shrinkage or rot.
Now the carving is officially underway, and the picture at right shows the start of the torso and legs that he’s carving now (you can also see some of the stock for the skates, gloves, shin pads etc. in the background).
August 15th: Progress continues as statue begins to take shape
Much progress has now been made on the carving. The torso is nearly complete and work on the head has begun. You can see the progress in the images below.
You can see more pictures on Ryan’s Facebook page.
September 15th: Statue is presented to at the Elgar Petersen Arena
The completed statue was presented during a ceremony at the Humboldt Broncos season-opening game, and is now on display at the arena. The completed statue is quite spectacular, and it’s hard to believe looking at it that it was carved using a chain saw!