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One year later: Memorial honouring hockey coach still in the works in Peace River

A year after the Humboldt Broncos Bus crash, plans for a memorial are still in the works in Peace River. The North Peace Navigators have spent the last year fundraising to build a statue in honour of former Coach Darcy Haugan who died in the crash last April.

President Albert Cooper says the statue will show how Haugan is remembered by the players he coached over the years.

“We’re doing a statue of Darcy in a coaching position, standing on the ice with his stick and with a whistle; very representative of how the players would have seen him throughout his career here.”

Haugan was one of 16 players, coaches and staff who died when their team bus was hit by a transport truck on a Saskatchewan Highway on April 6th, 2018. The driver of the transport was sentenced last month to eight years for dangerous driving causing death and bodily injury.

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Before becoming the coach of the Broncos, Haugan was the coach of the Navigators for 12 years. Currently, the team has raised $75,000 of its $83,000 goal which Copper says has come from a variety of sources.

“Most of it has been corporate donations; people who knew Darcy and supported him when he was coaching here. Some has come from families who felt that they had very strong relationships with Darcy and want to see him remembered.”

The statue is set to be built by Don Begg out of Cochrane and will be placed outside of the new recreation complex being built in the town. Cooper hopes the monument will act as a reminder of who Haugan was.

“The beauty of a statue is that it does last for an awfully long time. We hope that what he stood for, the kind of person he was will be remembered for future generations.”

There’s no timeline yet on when the statue will be built but Cooper hopes they can start as soon as they raise the remaining funds.

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