Calgary car dealership donating $55K by inspiring hundreds to leave their sticks out for Humboldt

Calgary car dealership donating $55K by inspiring hundreds to ‘leave their sticks out for Humboldt’
WATCH: The Humboldt Broncos bus crash tragedy has touched people both nationally and internationally. As Jill Croteau reports -- amid all the heartache -- a Calgary car dealership is giving people a space to contribute in a simple but profound way.

It is a silent but very strong symbol of solidarity. Images all across social media have captured sticks left out on porches in support of those affected by the Humboldt tragedy.

It’s a movement around the globe that has galvanized an incredible response at Calgary’s Jack Carter car dealership.

Jay McKeen, managing partner, promised to donate to the Humboldt GoFundMe for every stick dropped off on their porch.

“To watch them come in by the ones and the 10s and dozens was just really amazing,” McKeen said.

“They just kept coming and coming.”

READ MORE: Canadians are leaving their hockey sticks on front porches to pay tribute to Humboldt Broncos

By the noon hour on Tuesday, more than 300 sticks were brought to the lot. Among the people giving up their own hockey sticks were two boys who knew some of the bus crash victims.

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“It affects everyone and we have to stay strong and doing stuff like this helps heal and it’s heartwarming that everyone is staying close. That’s what we need to do right now,” Connor Blake said.

“To think of how many bus rides we’ve taken in our lifetime, it could have been any one of us on that bus,” Tyler McCarry said.

Hundreds of donated hockey sticks help Humboldt fundraiser
Hundreds of donated hockey sticks help Humboldt fundraiser. Jill Croteau/ Global News

Hockey moms and dads, coaches and kids were all parting with their coveted sticks. Each one helping raise money.

“We had a budget in mind when this started,” McKeen said. “That budget went out the window when we saw the incredible response.”

Hockey sticks lined up outside Jack Carter dealership
Hockey sticks lined up outside Jack Carter dealership. Jill Croteau

The dealership is donating $55,000 to the Humboldt fund.

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“What I am so inspired (by is) this is an issue we came together on. This isn’t what province you’re from or what political party you’re with. This is recognizing our country and the sport of hockey,” McKeen said.

READ MORE: Where and when you can pay tribute to victims of Humboldt Broncos bus crash

The dealership is accepting the sticks until the end of the week. They’ll all be gifted to youth organizations including the Comrie sports equipment program and the Hockey Foundation. The sticks can be used in memory of the Humboldt Broncos.