A grinch just about stole Christmas for a nine-year-old New Hazelton boy who was playing in this past weekend’s Cariboo Canucks First Nations Hockey Tournament.
Preston Pierre woke up Friday morning to discover his hockey gear had been stolen out of the back of the family’s truck, which had been parked at a downtown hotel.
His mom, Christina Archambault, said her son was devastated, as she had forgotten to lock the truck’s box as they were tired and arrived in Williams Lake late the previous night.
“We went out to get his gear to get ready and register (for the tournament),” Christina said.
“And it was all gone. His bag and sticks. Also his Under Armour backpack full of his clothes and accessories for the weekend.
“There were three sticks worth more than $300, all brand new, so he was pretty bummed.”
That’s when Total Ice Training Centre owner Tyrel Lucas, who had heard about the theft, leant Preston a helping hand.
He drove to Total Ice Training Centre, where they store some extra gear, and put together a bag for Preston before dropping it back off at the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex.
“That was really nice of them,” Christina said.
“But he didn’t want to play at all after, and definitely didn’t play like himself.”
With the loaned gear Preston was able to play the final 13 minutes of the team’s first game.
“Then he was just crying after the game was over,” Christina said.
The next morning Christina drove to Sport Chek to purchase her son some new gear so he could finish the tournament where they opened the door early for the family and gave him a hat and some tape.
“I wasn’t going to let some thieves ruin my son’s hockey weekend,” she said.
Now back home in New Hazelton, Christina said she’s hoping to do a 50/50 raffle to help cover the costs of replacing her son’s gear.
Preston and his team, the Lil Hawks, meanwhile, took first place in the age seven to nine division.
If anyone has any information about Preston’s gear they can e-mail Christina at Christina.firstname.lastname@example.org.