Photo courtesy Penticton Penguins

Three junior hockey players injured starting campfire

Ryan Vandervlis, a 20-year old centre with Lethbridge Hurricanes has been placed in a medically induced coma

Three hockey players have been injured in an off-ice incident, including a former member of the BCJHL’s Penticton Vees.

According to a release from the Western Hockey League, Jordy Bellerive and Ryan Vandervlis of the Lethbridge Hurricanes, along with WHL alumnus Matt Alfaro are recovering from various campfire-related injuries.

“It has been reported that the campfire occurred during a bachelor party. These reports are inaccurate. The campfire occurred at the family home of WHL Alumnus Tyler Wong the evening prior to a planned day of golf,” stated a portion of the release.

“Alfaro and Bellerive are currently in stable condition. Vandervlis has been placed in a medically-induced coma and is in critical condition.”

“He is receiving exceptional medical care in an intensive-care unit in Calgary,” Barb, Rene, Cara, Sean and Rachel Vandervlis said in a statement. “He remains in critical condition.”

Two others — Bellerive, a Pittsburgh Penguins prospect, and Alfaro, who now plays for the University of Calgary Dinos — were also injured.

The incident happened on June 15 and all three men are currently being treated for their injuries at a hospital in Calgary.

The WHL said the campfire took place at the family home of Hurricanes alumnus Tyler Wong.

Wong’s family said that nine of his friends came over to stay the night before going golfing and camping on Saturday.

“In starting a campfire, the accident occurred,” said the Wong family in their statement.

It said that both Wong’s parents were at home and they quickly transported the injured to hospital.

Alberta Health Services said an ambulance intercepted the car and took them the rest of the way to Calgary.

Cochrane RCMP have said they are investigating what happened at the fire, in the Bearspaw area of Rocky View County, but they have determined that a substance was placed into a fire pit that caused an explosion.

The Vandervlis family said alcohol wasn’t a factor.

Bellerive is expected to make a full recovery. The 19-year-old played 27 games with the Okanagan Hockey Academy and three games with the Penticton Vees in the 2014-15 season before moving on to the WHL Lethbridge Hurricanes. He was signed by the Pittsburgh Penguins to a three-year contract.

According to the Penguin’s blog, assistant general manager Bill Guerin has spoken with Bellerive, who is in good spirits and expected to make a full recovery.


Steve Kidd
Senior reporter, Penticton Western News
Email me or message me on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Houston mill to re-open June 8

Ends lengthy shutdown which began in March

No fines issued in provincial parks over May longweekend

Activities restricted to day-use only

B.C. government eyes antlerless moose harvest increase in bid to save caribou

Antlerless moose hunts reduce predation for threatened mountain caribou, says ministry

Social distancing at the skatepark — kids style

Kids in the village have taken on board this season of social… Continue reading

Spirit Square reopened on June 1

Spirit Square was closed to the community in accordance with the public… Continue reading

March dental conference key to many of B.C.’s COVID-19 cases

Early infections from China, Iran were quickly contained

MAP: Dr. Henry reveals which B.C. regions have seen most COVID-19 cases

B.C. health officials release a first look at how the novel coronavirus has reached all corners of the province

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation woman, 26, fatally shot by police in Edmundston, N.B.

Police were conducting a well-being check at the time of the incident

Seniors to receive up to $500 in promised COVID-19 emergency aid in early July

The Liberal government first promised the extra help in mid-May, but had to create a new system to deliver the aid

VIDEO: Revelstoke bear wanders into Animal House pet store

Staff got ready to chase it out with a broom

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

New study is first full list of species that only exist in Canada

Almost 40 per cent of them are critically imperilled or imperilled and eight are already extinct

Federal aid for care home systems needed ahead of second wave, advocates say

Ontario Long Term Care Association calling for more action

Most Read