As the third anniversary of Daron Richardson’s passing has gone by, her impact on the junior hockey community is not forgotten.
The Provincial Women’s Hockey League is holding its first annual Do It for Daron game to honor her memory.
This year, Richardson would have been 16 years old and eligible to compete in the PWHL. Her older sister, Morgan competed for the Ottawa Senators PWHL franchise before joining the Cornell Big Red in autumn 2012.
The December 20 contest features the two PWHL teams from Ottawa, where the Richardson family lived at the time of Daron's passing. The Ottawa Senators will play the Nepean Wildcats in the first annual event that will raise funds for Do It for Daron.
The initiative was started in February 2011 to honor Daron’s life and contribute to mental health research.
In the 20-team league, Nepean and Ottawa rank 14th and 15th, respectively.
The PWHL has emerged as the premier junior women’s hockey league in Ontario, producing talent for the Canadian under-18 national team. PWHL alumni including Erin Ambrose, Laura Stacey and the aforementioned Morgan Richardson have earned NCAA scholarships.
At the 2012 Canadian under-18 nationals, Team Ontario Blue and Team Ontario Red (the gold and bronze medal-winning squads) featured players from both Nepean and Ottawa.
Taylor Thurston, a 5'6" defender with Nepean, and Rebecca Leslie, a 5'6" forward with the Senators, played for Team Ontario Blue. Lauren Miller, a 5'7" forward with Nepean, played for Team Ontario Red.