On Sunday, September 20, the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League’s Melfort Mustangs announced the sudden passing of defenceman Dylan Ashe. Driving home Saturday evening on Saskatchewan Highway 35 northeast of Nipawin, the 18-year-old Ashe lost control of his car and rolled, succumbing to injuries suffered in the single-vehicle, single-occupant accident.
The Melfort Mustangs blueliner was to report to training camp on Tuesday.
Ashe’s mother Della announced the tragic accident through a Facebook post on Sunday afternoon.
“This is the hardest and most heartbreaking post I have ever had to make,” Della Ashe wrote. “Dylan was driving back to the lake last night and rolled the car. He didn’t make it out of the accident alive. I can honestly say I’m numb, and my heart literally feels broken. He was the most easy-going, fun loving, and never in a rush for anything type of guy. He loved his family and truck. Oh that truck, boy did he work hard on it. My favourite thing was when he would come home and go directly to eachof us and give us a big hug. He was making his last trip out to the lake and then heading home here for a couple days before taking off to Melfort for his second season with the Mustangs. He was looking forward to seeing all his hockey buddies. I am comforted knowing he was doing everything he loved to do, but unfortunately never fulfilled his dreams here, and now he will always be in my dreams. I can’t believe your life was so short. Please watch over us. I love you so, so, so much.”
Ashe’s team also paid its respects to its fallen player via social media:
“The Mustangs are sad to announce the passing of Defenceman Dylan Ashe,” the Mustangs tweeted Sunday. “From our entire organization we would like to send our deepest sympathies and condolences to the Ashe family. You are in our thoughts and prayers.”
The Warman, SK. product played U-18 AA as a 15-year-old in 2017-18 for the Warman Wildcats, before joining the Tisdale AAA U-18 Trojans to complete the season. He had three goals and 17 combined points in 33 total games. 2018-19 saw the 6-foot-1, 185-pound defender score once and add seven assists with the Trojans in 31 regular season games. Moving on to the SJHL last year, Ashe suited up in 46 games, scoring twice, while adding four assists and 93 penalty minutes in the Junior ‘A’ Saskatchewan system.
A Go-Fund-Me page has been created in Ashe’s name to help assist the family with funeral and other associated costs following the tragic accident.
Saskatchewan RCMP continue to investigate the scene of the crash. Those familiar with the SJHL and the past history of junior hockey-related accidents would recall the Humboldt Broncos accident in early April of 2018. The team’s bus was involved in a fatal accident on the same Highway 35, to which 13 team members were killed and another 16 were injured in the accident.