It has been one year since the tragic and untimely passing of Rick Rypien. The scrappy Canucks forward took his own life in his Coleman, Alberta home one year ago today.
Rypien often described as a caring a gentle person had struggled with depression for well over ten years.
He took two lengthy leaves of absence from the Canucks to deal with his personal demons.
Many thought after his second leave of absence and subsequent return to hockey that he had made a lot of positive gains and was headed in the right direction.
Upon his return to hockey, Rypien suited back up for the Manitoba Moose.
He played in 11 regular season games in 2010/11 before suiting up for 7 playoff games.
On July 2nd, Rick signed a one-year deal with the Winnipeg Jets. Sadly, he never did get to suit up and play a game for them.
He would take his own life one month later
Today, I’d like to share some of my favorite Rick Rypien moments. Rick had the heart of a lion and on the ice, seemingly knew no fear. Many times he battled players much bigger than him, many times he came out the victor.
Thanks for reading, today I’m just going to share with you my favorite Rick Rypien moments.
October 7th, 2009 – Hall Gill
I can still remember the still in the paper the next day. It was Rypien’s fist mashed right into the face of Hal Gill. But this also showed how fearless he was on the ice. Hal Gill is 6’7, 245lbs, while Rypien came in at 5”10, 180lbs.
December 10th, 2009 – Boris Valabik
I remember this one, like many fans do simply because the miss match of the fight. Also because it was Rick’s second fight against a giant in two months. Rypien gave up close to 60lbs on Valabik, but still hung in there and landed his share of punches.
October 2008 – Top Shelf
There weren’t a whole lot of them, but this is one of my favorite Rick Rypien goals. Rypien fights his way through two Calgary players and beats Miika Kiprusoff top shelf.
Vancouver vs. Chicago – Game 4, 2009 Playoffs – Spin Pass
I still remember watching this one live; I actually couldn’t believe my eyes. Not that this type of goal was scored, Vancouver had many highlight reel goals in 2008/09, but to see Rick Rypien and Darcy Hordichuk combine on a goal like this was pretty special.
Vancouver v Chicago – Game 5, 20009 Playoffs – Big shift
If you ever wanted an example of the energy that Rick Rypien brought, here’s the perfect clip. He goes out and man handles Chicago. Five hits on one shift. It brought the building to their feet.
Thank you for reading.
If you or anyone you know is or has been effected by depression please, check out http://www.mindcheck.ca/ it’s the website that the Vancouver Canucks and Vancouver Coast Health established.
The website is an outlet for people who may struggle with depression.
It provides resources for people who have question about mental health.