The plane crash last week that killed everyone on the roster and coaching staff of the KHL's Lokomotiv Yaroslavl sparked mourning worldwide for the family, friends and hockey heroes that were lost in the tragedy.
In North America, special attention was paid to the players who had competed in the National Hockey League. Stefan Liv was a player drafted by the Detroit Red Wings but better known for his exploits in Sweden, where he was Player of the Year in the Elitserien for 2007-08.
As you can see from the image above, the tributes for Liv back home were considerable. Puck Daddy reader Lina sent over this link from Swedish media and wrote:
Several thousands of people that gathered to say goodbye to their beloved goalie and friend. At page 2 and 3 you can see Stefans two children laying down a red rose each — the most touching moment is when the youngest son pointed with the rose at the big picture and shouted "Daddy!" I think everyone burst into tears at that moment.
We lack the words to convey how heartbreaking that sounds.
Coming up, tributes to the players lost in the crash that span from New Jersey to Miami to Prague to Yaroslavl.
First, from Russia:
Here is Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin laying flowers during a memorial ceremony for the victims of the Russian plane crash in the Arena in Yaroslavl on Saturday. From the AP:
An estimated 100,000 people flocked to a memorial ceremony Saturday in the western city of Yaroslavl for the victims of the Russian plane crash that devastated a top ice hockey team.
"For the first time in my life, I had trouble entering an ice arena," Vyacheslav Fetisov, a former NHL star who is chairman of the Kontinental Hockey League, said at the ceremony. "It's an inexplicable tragedy."
The service was also attended by several KHL teams.
From Omsk, reader Paul Brecheisen writes in:
I am an American living in Omsk, Russia. My sons play hockey here so we are connected to the hockey world. Many are in shock and in mourning.
On Thursday evening a game was planned between Avangard Omsk and Siber Novosibirsk. Obviously the game was canceled. The Novosibirsk fans still made the trip to Omsk and gathered with Omsk fans in front of Arena Omsk where they made a memorial to Lokomotiv. They left flowers, candles, photos, jerseys, etc. You can see photos here. Afterwards the fans went to an Orthodox church together.
Tragedy brings us together, no matter the sweater.