Rick Rypien took his own life a year ago today. The post I wrote last year at this time sums up how I feel about Rick and I don’t think I need to add anything in that respect. It’s one of those posts that sticks with you after writing it. Not my greatest writing style wise but bare and honest and filled with feeling. But I didn’t write this post to parade my writing around.
I wanted to write this post because there hasn’t been a day this year where Rick Rypien hasn’t crossed my mind. He should have played for the Jets this season and I should have followed his career from a distance like I do with all my other fave former Canucks guys. I should have watched his ice time climb and his interviews after games and his smiles with Bieksa post Canucks and Jets meeting on the ice.
Depression is awful and hard and the worst kind of villan. Some of my dearest loved ones deal with mental illness every day and it’s never easy. Mind Check, the Canucks joint initiative with BC mental health organizations is a great resource started in Rick Rypien’s memory. If someone close to you is struggling or you need help yourself, Mind Check could be a wonderful place to start. Also, my email is on the sidebar there and I’m always on twitter if you ever need someone to listen.
I wanted to write that and I meant every word of it. I would also like to suggest that you take some time to watch a YouTube highlight of Rick scoring a goal (His two goals against Calgary are especially nice) or fighting a guy 6 inches taller than he was. Or read about the charities he supported, like Kids’ Sport Alberta. Rick Rypien wanted to help people with his story and I’m sure he’d be proud of the work Mind Check and the Canucks have done. There is absolutely no shame in talking about mental illness. But he was a man beyond his depression with family and friends and likes and dislikes and passions and weird habits and everything else that make individual people so unique. No one deserves to be defined solely by their disease.
RIP Rick. People sure do miss you.