Yorkton's Kaedan Korczak suited up for Team Canada in this year's IIHF World Junior Ice Hockey Championships in Edmonton, and the community is rallying behind him ahead of the gold medal game.
"My family and friends, well their support has always been incredible, and then people like the whole community, just people I know of or know of us or don't even know Kaedan and they've shown their support in various ways," Tricia Korczak, Kaedan’s mother, said the day of the gold medal game.
Yorkton Minor Hockey has set up a sign off Broadway Street showing support for their alumnus, but the support for Korczak doesn't stop there.
"[Kaedan’s] said like every day the people that are calling and texting and messaging and sending videos and just good luck wishes and, yeah, it's really cool," Tricia added.
Yorkton Minor Hockey player and past World Juniors captain Jarret Stoll is just one of the names who have sent words of encouragement to the Korczak in the Edmonton bubble.
Korczak’s father, Chad, says seeing his son at the tournament is “pretty exciting.”
"It’s pretty special obviously, you know, growing up in Yorkton for him and playing his minor hockey in Yorkton here, it's pretty exciting,” Chad said.
“You know, it think it gives not so much hope, but there is for the young kids and the young players in smaller communities that they can make it.”
Mayor Mitch Hippsley says the community being able to rally being Korczak over the past few weeks has brought some much needed brightness.
"It just totally undoes all the negativity and brings all the positive back and everyone's excited," Hippsley commented.
A coach from Korczak’s minor hockey and midget days, Graham Garrett, was supposed to be in the stands cheering on the first of his players to play at the international tournament, but instead has had to settle with supporting from afar.
"Hopefully that he sees that he's inspiring a lot of people and making people all around the community proud of what he's accomplished," Garrett said.
The puck drops for the gold medal matchup between Canada and the United States at 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday evening. You can watch the championship game on TSN.