One of the good guys, who everyone loved, was taken from his family and friends after a freak accident while he was playing the game he loved, on Oct. 4, 2018.
Noah Trulsen, 22, had been playing men’s league recreational hockey game in Langley and was heading back to the bench for a line change when he tripped and smashed head-first into the boards.
He never recovered.
“We would like to thank both hockey teams on the ice, the paramedics, ambulance attendants, and police that attended and tried to help our son at the arena, as well as the doctors and nurses at Langley hospital who tried, in vain, to save our son. We love you son and we will think of you every day,” said Noah’s dad, Rick Trulsen, on Facebook at the time.
Soon after his death, a gofundme page was set up with a modest goal of raising $10,000.
But within days that target was exceeded, so that by the middle of December, almost $19,000 of $20,000 had been raised for the Noah Trulsen Memorial Fund.
Noah’s legacy continues to grow with a bursary now created in his honour. That bursary, approximately $1,500, supported by the memorial fund, will be given to a Maple Ridge hockey-playing student who’s enrolled in a trades program, said his mom Lorraine Trulsen.
Another fundraiser in the works is a juvenile C scholarship tournament that also will provide a scholarship in Noah’s name.
In another tribute, the Hometown Heroes Tournament that takes place Jan. 2 to 5 will have Noah declared at the hometown hero. The whole family will be there in his honour to drop the puck to kick off the tourney. As well, minor hockey’s Winter Roundup, in the last week of December, featured a breakaway challenge in his honour.
Noah Trulsen played his younger years with the Ridge Meadows Minor Hockey Association and was a scholarship recipient in his Grade 12 season, 2012-13, and had recently completed the fourth year of a post-secondary Red Seal electrical training program.
His brother Matthew is a goaltender now with the Port Moody Panthers of the Pacific Junior Hockey League, while his parents, Rick and Lorraine, are long-time minor hockey volunteers.
Lorraine said her gentle giant of a son obviously made an impression on people.
“We knew he was a good kid inside our four walls, but we’re so proud of the man he was out in the world,” she said. “He was kind, he was gentle, he was caring, he was empathetic, he was loving …
“If he knew you for five minutes or knew you for 10 years, he made you feel like you were his best friend.”