On Sunday night, hockey players, coaches and other supporters in Brewer and beyond left their hockey sticks and pucks out on their porches, some with the initials JP etched into them.
It was a tribute to 17-year-old Jordan Parkhurst, a Brewer High School senior who died in a car crash on Brewer’s Wiswell Road on Saturday night.
“When a hockey player or someone in the hockey community passes away, it’s kind of a tribute to them to leave a hockey stick out on a porch in honor of them,” said Lance Ingerson, the head coach of Brewer High School’s varsity ice hockey team. “It’s a tradition in hockey.”
Parkhurst on Monday was remembered as a leader and a hard worker with a special ability to cheer up his teammates. Hockey played a special role in his life, and he was looking forward to the upcoming season playing varsity ice hockey, according to his obituary. Parkhurst played defense for the Brewer Witches.
Parkhurst started playing hockey in the Brewer Youth Hockey league. Ingerson started coaching Parkhurst when he reached high school, and said he was always a team player and a natural leader.
“My team looked at him as one of the leaders both on and off the ice,” Ingerson said. “He was a great person, great hockey player and a great leader, and as a team, we miss him.”
On Monday, Parkhurst’s teammates wore their black and orange jerseys to school in his honor. The entire school community was in mourning, said Parkhurst’s teammate and friend, Kolby Brooks, 17.
“It was very quiet,” he said. “It was heartbreaking for everyone to go through that.”
Brooks and Aubrey Badger, 17, had both known Parkhurst as a friend and teammate for almost a decade. They all met through Brewer Youth Hockey, and eventually worked their way up to the high school hockey team.
Brooks and Badger remember Parkhurst as a kind person and a hardworking teammate.
“We could be losing a game 100 to nothing and he could walk in, say one thing and make everyone feel better,” Badger said.
When Brooks heard about Parkhurst’s death, he didn’t believe the news.
“I was shocked, I didn’t want to believe it was true,” he said. “It all hit me later.”
Parkhurst leaves behind his parents, Scott and Debra, and a brother and sister, Ryan and Meghan, according to his obituary.
Brewer Youth Hockey is accepting donations — both in person and online — to purchase gift cards for Parkhurst’s family, according to the league’s Facebook page.