It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that Hockey Canada recognizes the death of Cpl. Michael Starker, who lost his life in Afghanistan on Tuesday morning.
Cpl. Starker’s wife, Nicole, is a former Hockey Canada employee, working in the marketing services department.
A Calgary medic, Cpl. Starker had already dedicated years of his life to the Canadian military when volunteers were sought to serve in the dangerous Afghan mission.
What was anticipated to be his last tour in Afghanistan proved deadly for the reservist, who was killed during a Taliban ambush that also injured another Canadian soldier.
Thousands of NATO soldiers stood at attention on the tarmac on Wednesday as Cpl. Starker's flag-draped coffin was carried aboard a Hercules transport for the flight back to Canada.
Cpl. Starker is the fourth Calgarian, and 83rd Canadian soldier, to die during the Afghanistan mission.
The thoughts and prayers of everyone at Hockey Canada go out to Nicole and their families during this difficult time.