LA Kings honors employee killed in Las Vegas mass shooting
LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The Los Angeles Kings will pay tribute to a team employee killed in Sunday night's massacre in Las Vegas at Thursday night's season-opener against the Philadelphia Flyers at Staples Center.
Kings players will wear a special "CD'' sticker on the back of their helmets in tribute to Christiana Duarte of Torrance, and all Kings staff members will wear a special pin in her honor.
Duarte, a 22-year-old fan services associate who lived in Redondo Beach, began working for the team this summer.
"Our organization is overwhelmed with grief over the loss of our colleague Chrissy. We would like to thank everyone for their outreach, love and support,'' Kings president Luc Robitaille said.
"In just a brief period of time, Chrissy had an immeasurable impact on all of us. We want to make every effort to ensure that everyone knows how special she was and the impact she already had made on so many people. We would also ask that everyone please understand and respect her family's wish for privacy at this difficult time.''
A pregame ceremony will honor Duarte and the other shooting victims with a moment of silence and a video, along with a salute to first responders who were on the scene.
All proceeds from the Kings 50/50 raffle will be donated by the Kings Care Foundation to the Las Vegas Victims' Fund.
The team is also encouraging fans to support a GoFundMe page set up for the family of Duarte, whose father, Michael, is a deputy district attorney.
More than $92,000 has been donated as of Thursday morning on behalf of the family through the website, which says that the victim's family has "already expressed their deep gratitude for the outpouring of support and sympathy.''
"Our hearts go out to Chrissy's family and loved ones and everyone else associated with this horrible act of terror,'' Kings captain Anze Kopitar said. "As a team it was important for us to contribute in any way possible.''
Duarte was killed while attending the Route 91 Harvest Country Music Festival in Las Vegas with her brother's girlfriend, who was injured. She had graduated from South High School in Torrance and graduated in May from the University of Arizona.
Duarte had previously worked for the Los Angeles Rams as a corporate sponsorships training camp intern, the Arizona Diamondbacks as a sales intern and the Tucson Roadrunners of the American Hockey League as an operations and promotions intern, along with the University of Arizona as an operations and marketing intern.
"This attack is a terrible tragedy for hundreds of families, and it is a shocking and horrific event for all of us,'' University of Arizona President Robert C. Robbins said in a statement, in which he noted that university staff was reaching out to those who knew her, including "her sorority sisters in Sigma Kappa.''
The Chicago White Sox also issued a series of Tweets in remembrance of Duarte, whose brother, Michael Jr., was drafted by the team earlier this year.
"Many fans have reached out to ask how to support our prospect Michael Duarte and his family,'' the team said, noting that a fund had been set up for the family "to help cover their expenses in these difficult times.''
"The White Sox family continues to send thoughts and deepest sympathies to the Duarte family and to all who were affected by this attack,'' the Chicago White Sox said in the last of the series of tweets.
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