Winnipeg Jets players will be wearing Rick Rypien jerseys when they take the ice for warmups before Tuesday night’s game against the Nashville Predators.
Rypien, who spent six years in the Vancouver Canucks’ organization before signing a one-year deal with the Jets in 2011, never played a game for Winnipeg, but the team certainly embraces him as its own. After suffering from depression and other mental health issues, Rypien committed suicide less than two months after he signed his contract with the Jets. He was 27.
The Jets will commemorate Rypien on Bell Let’s Talk Day in Canada. The Canadian media company is pledging to donate five cents to mental health initiatives for every tweet using the hashtag #BellLetsTalk and Facebook share of the Bell Let’s Talk image, in addition to text messages and long-distance calls that are made by Bell customers. As of 6 p.m. ET, the site listed more than 66 million communications.
The jerseys that the Jets wear to remember Rypien will be available for auction on NHL.com until Feb. 7. Proceeds will benefit the Hockey Talks Mental Health Awareness/Research initiative.
Check out the Jets’ tribute to Rypien in the photo below.
Winnipeg Jets (@NHLJets) January 28, 2014