I received the text alert to my cell phone sometime Saturday, I can’t remember exactly when. But what I do remember is that it was one of those moments in time that I got the chills down my spine.
Now I get text alerts all the time. The Sandusky case, the hurricane, election night results. But this one hit home. And I know I have posted other blogs with the same message of life being too short and that things can change in an instant.
This, though, was a severe shock to my system.
The text reported the death of a young man named Levi Tremblay of Spring City. Apparently, he was killed when the car he was driving ran off the road near St. Peters and struck a utility pole. Police so far don’t seem to have much to go on and have asked anyone with information to contact them.
I first met Levi as a young, young guy when my oldest son and I coached a house team at Center Ice. My memory of him was that of a nice little kid who seemed to love to play hockey.
According to his obituary, Levi graduated in 2010 from Owen J. Roberts High School. He played ice hockey for the Owen J. Roberts Wildcats, PA Predators, Valley Forge Colonials, and the Hill School Men’s League. He also played golf for Owen J. Roberts High School and baseball at the Kimberton Youth Athletic League.
So it looks like he continued with his hockey career and did well for himself. I remember his dad as well. Leif was also a great guy who I always kidded with him telling him he should have played in the NHL with a name like Leif Tremblay. He and Levi had names more appropriate for the big-time than Andy Hachadorian. I also kidded with Levi as a young guy asking him if his parents named him after the pants? He always had that bewildered look when I said that because little kids do that when old guys like me trot out corny jokes.
Nonetheless, the news was quite shocking. I can’t imagine the pain his family is feeling. Throughout my involvement with hockey I haven’t had to witness or go through losing too many youngsters. I have for the most part watched them grow from little kids like Levi into grown men who go to college, get jobs, get married and some even have kids of their own. Yes, it’s a reminder of how old I am getting but it’s a nice thing too watching them all grow up like they were my kids. I cherished my time with all of them knowing I’d probably lose touch as they grew up and went their way through life.
That was the deal with Levi. While I hadn’t seen him in many years (although I saw his dad somewhere recently…) I never forget a name, a face or my time with them. So it made me very, very sad to hear about the tragic news.
According to his obituary, Levi loved outdoor activities, especially trap shooting, snowboarding, ice hockey, hunting and fishing. Levi enjoyed spending time with his friends and was always there for anyone in need. He also loved spending time with his cousins and traveling to upstate New York with them. I can only hope that his years up to this tragedy were filled with joy and happiness. Seems so.
It’s just such a tragic and sad thing when we lose our young people so early in life. They seem to have it all going for them when fate decides to take them in another direction. It’s just a shame that they are robbed of their opportunity to make a mark in the world.
Too often our children are taken before their time. As a father of four kids I can’t even imagine the loss of one of my children. It would be something I’m not sure how I would handle.
My heart goes out to the Tremblay family. There’s absolutely nothing I can say or do to make them feel any better. As I have said in other similar situations, their lives will never be the same. Yes, time will heal some of their wounds.
But nothing will ever feel the same. There is a void that will never, ever be filled. The best thing they can do is know that a little kid named Levi made an impression on me and I never forgot him. Probably anyone who ever met and/or knew Levi would say the same.
Keep his family in your thoughts. And remember life can change in an instant – good or bad. Enjoy the days, the people and your life every moment. It’s what we can do.
– Andy Hachadorian