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I just got off the phone with Ottawa Senators' VP of communications, Phil Legault and Chad Schella, the team's director of player services. Both were willing to speak on the record to me and offered an official explanation regarding the Daron Richardson press release, which was discussed the previous post.

According to Schella, the Richardsons came to the decision to release the details of Daron's suicide after discussions with their medical team and chaplin. "We never would have released it otherwise," Schella said. "(Luke and Stephanie) approved the statement and the specific words that were used. We've tried to help as much as we could."

The decision to pull the release from the website was made by the Senators PR department, as well as the club's president, Cyril Leeder. "We decided that two hours would be long enough to for it to stay on our website," Phil Legault said. "Obviously, once the statement gets out to the media, it's out there - you can't take it back, but we were also trying to be respectful for the family's sake."

When asked if the team had received any negative feedback regarding the release, Legault said that there had been none. "The family has been applauded for their bravery (in releasing the information.)"

There you have it. Much thanks to Phil Legault and Chad Schella for speaking to me, and credit to the Ottawa Senators organization for being willing to do so.

More later.

1 response to "Ottawa Senators: "Richardson family approved the press release""

  1. In the absence of solid information, people fill in the blanks on their own. Therefore, had the basic details not been released, the rumour mill would have been in full overdrive, making an terrible tragedy even worse.

    Anyone who has ever had suicide touch their lives knows how unspeakably awful it is. It leaves a trail of emotional destruction far and wide. The cycle of anger, guilt and sadness is relentless, especially in those first few days. I went through it years ago when a young player I coached in football took his own life. I still remember it like it was yesterday, and relived it again when I thought of what those close to this young girl and her family are going through.

    Dennis Prouse