VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) - The Canucks will pay tribute to Rick Rypien on Tuesday night with a video honoring the Vancouver enforcer who committed suicide in the offseason after struggling with depression for a decade.
The club will show the video before its game against the New York Rangers. The Canucks also announced they will make a $50,000 donation in Rypien's name to BC Children's Hospital Foundation.
The contribution includes support from the NHL Players' Association's Goals & Dreams fund and supports a youth and young adult mental health promotion strategy led by British Columbia health agencies.
"Rick Rypien was dedicated to helping young people and those in need," TC Carling, executive director of the Canucks for Kids Fund, said in a statement. "Through this partnership with BCCHF, BCMHAS and the support of the Vancouver Canucks we can work together to ensure Rick's passion to help those in need is well served."
The Canucks were given a preview of the video Monday to help ease what is expected to be an emotional ceremony.
"Our players were able to look at it (Monday) because we didn't want to surprise them right before the game, to see the video," Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault told the Canadian Press. "It's real powerful, but it's a real tribute to a nice young man."
Canucks captain Henrik Sedin said that, even without watching the video in front of fans, the video sparked a lot of emotions.
"It really sinks in to how close he was to all of us and how good a teammate he was," Sedin said. "It was an emotional time, for sure. A lot of players played with him for a lot of years, even back in Manitoba. We were all close to him and it was emotional."
Rypien was 27 when he committed suicide in August. He played six years with Vancouver before signing with Winnipeg this summer.