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Minor hockey coach killed in early-morning crash


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Tragedy struck Highway 102 early Thursday morning as a family heading for a hockey tournament in the Halifax area were involved in a single-vehicle crash. A 49-year-old man, who coached the Parrsboro peewee hockey team, was pronounced dead at the scene.

BROOKFIELD – A Cumberland County hockey coach has been identified as the victim of Thursday morning’s fatal car crash in Brookfield.

While police did not release the name on Thursday, sources have identified the man as Mike St. Peter, a hockey coach with the Parrsboro Predators peewee hockey team, who lived in the Maccan area.

“They were on their way to Halifax for a hockey tournament,” Colchester County RCMP Sgt. Al Affleck told the Truro Daily News.

Kevin McCrindle, who coached with St. Peter, said the team knew something was wrong when neither he nor his son showed up for the start of the game.

“We were on the ice when one of the parents came over to the bench and told us about it.

“One of the parents got a call from one of the people in our association who heard about it,” McCrindle said.

“Some of the players were trying to get a hold of him before the game. They were texting his son but they couldn’t get a hold of him,” said McCrindle, adding St. Peter loved coaching and was highly thought of by the players.

“He loved coaching Parrsboro and said how great it was to come down here.”

This was St. Peter’s first year in the Parrsboro association. His son played hockey in the Cumberland County Minor Hockey Association last season.

Parrsboro Minor Hockey Association president Matt Smith said he and all members of the minor hockey community are in a state of shock at what happened.

“It’s a terrible thing. Mike was a great fellow and one of the few that always showed up at the rink with a positive attitude,” Smith said.

St. Peter, 49, was pronounced dead at the scene following a single-vehicle crash at 7:34 a.m. on Highway 102 between the Brookfield and the Truro Power Centre exits.

The car hit the shoulder of the road and rolled over three times before coming to rest in the southbound lane.

St. Peter’s wife, who was driving the car, and his 12-year-old son were taken to Colchester Regional Hospital, treated and released before noon.

Traffic was backed up near the Truro Power Centre overpass following the accident. Police closed the road and rerouted traffic to Highway 2 for about three hours to investigate and clear the scene.

A mechanical inspection is being done to try to determine what caused the crash.

“Preliminary investigations tells us something caused the driver to lose control of the vehicle,” Affleck said. “Eye witnesses, (who were) coming the other way saw the whole thing, said it looked like she was having trouble steering.”

The driver of the vehicle told police she heard “a pop” and the mechanical inspection was to determine items, including if a blown tire caused the crash.

jmalloy@trurodaily.com

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