TORONTO – Minor hockey players paid tribute to their fallen teammate in their first game since their star goalie was killed in an alleged triple homicide east of Toronto.
Fifteen-year-old Roy Pejcinovski, described as a promising hockey player, was found dead in his family’s home in Ajax, Ont., on Wednesday, alongside his mother Krassimira Pejcinovski and 13-year-old sister Vanallia, who was badly injured and later died in hospital.
Police have charged 29-year-old Cory Fenn, who was in a relationship with the mother, with second-degree murder in the deaths.
On Sunday, Pejcinovski’s team, the Don Mills Flyers, played the Toronto Marlboros in a friendly game where both sides wore jerseys with an “R” emblazoned on the front to tribute the goalie.
The mood at the Toronto ice rink was sombre, with no cheers ringing out when either team scored a goal.
The score board for the game remained at 7-4 throughout to represent Pejcinovski’s jersey number.
There was no winner declared.
WATCH: Close friends, neighbours mourn loss of Ajax family
Greater Toronto Hockey League strength conditioning coach Phil Zullo said being able to play was like meditation for the teens, some of whom were close friends of Pejcinovski.
He commended the league’s decision to pay tribute to Pejcinovski and hold a moment of silence.
“I don’t know if the kids would have been able to play without this. Nobody thought twice about it, it was an amazing idea,” Zullo said.
“Some of his good friends got in touch with me, and they took the news really hard, it was shocking for them.”
A GHTL spokesperson said the whole community would stand together in condolences.
“It’s difficult to know what to say to people,” he said over the hockey’s PA system before the game.
“In time I hope your thoughts will turn to good times.”
He said that the league will remember Pejcinovski as a teammate and a friend, and said he hopes the community can stick together and support each other in the wake of the tragedy.