Moose Jaw Warriors mourn the loss of Ethan Williams, 16

The Western League franchise announced the unexpected passing of the young man from Winnipeg, who had played a game for the Warriors in 2012-13 and had a birthday coming up.

The Western League’s Moose Jaw Warriors are dealing with tragedy right now, as one of the team’s prospects passed away this week. Ethan Williams, 16, was a Winnipeg native who played one game for the Warriors in 2012-13, spending last season in midget with the Winnipeg Thrashers. The following statement comes from GM Alan Millar on the Moose Jaw website, dated July 30:

“Our entire organization is very saddened today with the news of Ethan Williams’ passing.  Ethan was a fine young man, and a very talented hockey player. Our thoughts and prayers are with Chris and Shannon and the entire Williams family during this difficult time.”

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Williams, a 5-foot-10, 162-pound center, registered eight points in 24 games for the Thrashers last season. He was selected in the fifth round of the 2012 WHL bantam draft, going 90th overall.

When reached, agent Darcy Tucker politely declined comment on Williams’ passing, out of respect for the family and the ongoing grieving process. The young man would have turned 17 on Aug. 22; no cause has been made public.