Brendan Burke, the 21-year-old son of Toronto Maple Leafs President and general manager Brian Burke, was killed in a car crash in Economy, Indiana on Friday night.
According to reports, the accident occurred when Brendan lost control of his jeep during snowy conditions and crashed head on with another car. Brendan’s friend Mark Reedy, 18, was also killed. Reedy was 18.
Brendan was a student and on the staff of the hockey team at Miami University in Ohio. Earlier this hockey season he was praised for speaking frankly about his homosexuality and about being a gay man in a macho sport.
Brendan’s father Brian responded at the time: “I simply could not be more proud of Brendan than I am, and I love him as much as I admire him.”
Brian Burke had been in the news lately for his role as the general manager of the U.S. men’s hockey team for the Vancouver Olympics; he was set to march in the opening ceremony next Friday. There has been no word on how his son’s death will affect his participation in the upcoming games.
Brendan leaves behind his father, mother, stepmother and five siblings. Our thoughts go out to his entire family at this difficult time.