We have a terrible tragedy to report.
A 13 year old boy who was doing his best to prepare for the upcoming hockey season has lost his life in what appears to have been a terrible on-ice accident. According to a report from the Montgomery Community Media, a young man collapsed on the ice earlier this week when he was struck by a puck and despite the best efforts of paramedics and the hospital staff that eventually treated him, he was pronounced dead several hours later. Although initial reports did not identify the young man we now know due to a statement from the Montgomery Youth Hockey Association as well as due to a GoFundMe campaign set up in his honor that the young man was 13 year old Henry Lentz.
Although there has been no real information provided regarding how Lentz was hit with the puck it has been reported that he died as the result of a brain injury so I think it is safe to assume that he was likely struck in the head by an errant puck while participating in what has been described as a hockey clinic or hockey camp. The GoFundMe campaign suggests that it was a "catastrophic brain injury" which unfortunately resulted in Henry's parents having to make a choice that will likely live with them until the day that they die. His parents wrote on the GoFundMe that "with no hope of recovery, we made the decision to remove his breathing tube," and added that their son passed on less than 30 minutes later after the decision was made "in the loving arms of his mom and dad."
I cannot properly articulate just how sorry I feel for the Lentz family who have lost such a bright and promising young man far too soon, but I would also like to take a moment here to think of the other victim in this story. There's no doubt that another young man, the one who fired the puck that killed Henry, has also been the victim of a terrible tragedy here. I don't know how anyone at that age is meant to cope with taking the life of another human being, possibly even a friend, especially in a scenario like this one where it was clearly accidental. I hope that he is not forgotten in this story and that he gets the help he will almost certainly need as a result of this tragedy.
Once again our thoughts and condolences go out to the Lentz family, Henry's loved ones, and all the young men and coaches at the camp who have been impacted by this tragedy.