…it’s where we feel safe – Arch Ecker
In a stunning turn of events, legendary junior hockey broadcaster Arch Ecker passed away Tuesday of a heart attack while hospitalized in Spokane. Ecker died after more than a year of recovery efforts following a single car rollover crash that left him with numerous internal injuries.
With nearly 1,500 games broadcasted in his career, it’s easy to think of Ecker for only his time behind the microphone. He was much, much more. To my family, Arch was a great friend. A talented musician, Ecker took the time to work with my daughter Sonia, helping get through a few awkward years as her voice matured. Ecker never wavered in his support of her music and was certainly one of the most influential in her career.
There is a lot more to Ecker than hockey and music. We had more than one heated discussion regarding his Oakland-Los Angeles-Oakland-Las Vegas Raiders. We also talked about his love of family, friends, and of course, hockey.
Of all the trials and drama that comes with a lifetime spent in hockey, the one incident that changed Ecker above and beyond anything else was the loss of nineteen-year-old Topeka RoadRunners forward Peter Halash back in 2014. I don’t know if Ecker ever really got over that loss. Halash was lost after a one-car accident.
A little more than four years later, Ecker stood strong while the hockey world mourned those lost in the 2018 Humboldt Broncos bus accident. Broncos head coach and general manager Darcy Haugan was a close friend of Deysi and I. Ecker suggested doing something would ease the grief.
That something ended up being this:
Ecker lent his voice to the project (along with Tommy Nast) and provided a chilling closing.
There were a lot of prayers coming in from around the world, in and outside of hockey, when word broke of Ecker’s accident last year. After numerous close calls, the collective sighs of relief could be heard coast to coast when our friend finally went home from the hospital. I think we all believed he dodged the bullet, which made Tuesday’s news hit us all that much harder.
There will never be another Arch Ecker and I’m going to miss our great conversations, laughter, arguments, and even tears.
We’ll always love you Archman. Give Darcy and the boys a high-five from us all when you see them.