A lifelong athlete with dreams of pursuing a career in business and finance, Humboldt Broncos goaltender Parker Tobin was known for his patience, sense of humour and intelligence.
Tobin was from Stony Plain and played for the Spruce Grove Saints before moving on to be the netminder for the Broncos.
He and his fellow players Jaxon Joseph, Logan Hunter and Stephen Wack, who were all from St. Albert, were remembered during a celebration of life Tuesday afternoon at Rogers Place.
“He was unlike any other,” said Brandon Ewanchyshyn, who counted himself as one of Tobin’s best friends.
“I never felt weird standing next to him because I knew he was just a tiny bit weirder than I am.”
That weirdness, growing from his dry wit and sense of humour, was something Tobin’s friends and family recall as one of his most endearing traits.
“Parker was a wonderful, athletic, funny and intelligent young man who took life in stride,” said Barb Potter, a family friend and the wife of one of Tobin’s past coaches.
“He was okay to be weird and funny and not take things serious all the time.”
Tobin recently started listening to financial podcasts instead of music while travelling. He was an avid gamer and regularly won against Ewanchyshyn when the two would get together to play video games.
He was also a patient teacher and would take the time to explain things to other players on his team.
“He was a true leader,” Potter said.
That skill only grew more honed as Tobin grew older, earning him the nickname “Teacher Tobin” who was always willing to help, Ewanchyshyn said. When a game went south for Ewanchyshyn, it would be Tobin who encouraged him.
A tremendous athlete who played several sports growing up, Tobin wasn’t a handshake sort of guy: he preferred hugs.
Ryan Rechner, one of Tobin’s former coaches, said Tobin’s hugs left a lasting impression on him.
Rechner recalled seeing Tobin’s career in hockey rise as he moved from the Saints to the Broncos, and how happy he was with the Broncos.
“He was a team-first guy, happy to contribute however he could – even if that meant not playing,” Rechner said.
“He was intelligent beyond his years.”