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New Jersey Devils Honor Fallen Hockey Players

Game-used Vasyunov Lokomotiv Yarslavl jersey memorial.

After a long summer of loss in the hockey world, on September 7, 2011, another tragedy hit. The plane carrying the Kontinental Hockey League team, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, crashed en route to Belarus for their first game of the season. Only one person survived.

Friends, families and fans all over the world held memorials for the 44 people that passed away.

New Jersey Devils fans held a memorial in the Championship Plaza of Prudential Center to pay respects to the two former Devils, Karel Rachunek and Alexander Vasyunov. The fans in attendance wrote messages on pucks, hats and signs in remembrance.

We celebrate the lives of these two men, as well as all of the victims, with a display on the main concourse near the south tower and across from the Dream Team bench. The signed pucks and hats, from fans, and photos surround a game worn Vasyunov Lokomotiv jersey.

In an effort to help the families of the victims, Ilya Kovalchuk set up a fundraiser. Those who sent $17 to the KHL Yaroslavl Victims’ Families Fund would receive a signed photograph of Kovalchuk. Park East Restaurant in Hazlet, NJ held an autograph session with Kovalchuk yesterday and the proceeds went to the Families Fund.

Hockey wives and girlfriends from around the world also banded together to create Love for Lokomotiv, a site where anyone can provide a donation or purchase one of two types of bracelets that commemorate those who lost their lives.

The hockey world will always remembers those who were on that plane that morning.

Memorial at Championship Plaza for KHL Lokomotiv Yaroslavl

KHL Memorial at Championship PlazaAs many of you know, two former New Jersey Devils, Alexander Vasyunov and Karel Rachunek, were tragically killed in a plane crash on Wednesday, September 7th, along with 41 other members of Lokomotiv Yaroslavl of the Kontinental Hockey League. In honor of these players and coaches, the New Jersey Devils fans are organizing a memorial in Championship Plaza near the statue.

The memorial will be held at 5pm on Friday, September 9th. Fans will be bringing posters, flowers and candles to pay their respects to players and coaches that meant so much to our sport. Please join them if you are available. The event will be held rain or shine, however, if you are planning on bringing posters or pictures, please take steps to preserve them from the elements. This is not only open to Devils fans, all hockey fans are welcome to join us.

On behalf of the Devils Army Generals, our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the victims of this tragic accident.

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