When CBSsportsline.com came out with its 50 top hockey stories of 2005, BYU hockey was second on its list. Unfortunately, it wasn’t for a spectacular goal or win. It was rather for the sudden and tragic death of an IceCats player.
On Jan. 21, 2005, the IceCats were defending a power play against the visiting Northern Colorado Bears. Freshman Jaxon Logan dove in front of a slap shot and was struck in the chest with the puck, blocking the shot and leading directly to a short-handed BYU goal. This blow to Logan’s chest set into motion the chain of events that would lead to cardiac arrest and his subsequent death moments later.
While the final image of Logan is him collapsing near the IceCats bench, Darcy Logan, Jaxon’s mother, wants to emphasize that her son was more than just the sport.
“He was a wonderful young man that also stood for right, who was kind, who was trying to make good choices for his life, who played his heart out because that was who he was.”
Logan’s parents remember an essay written when he was junior in high school titled “Who am I?” In his answer, Logan cited personal and religious beliefs, but his family says his legacy is also found in the way he treated people.
“Jaxon just lived life and enjoyed it,” Logan’s father Mike Logan said. “Little things happened in his life that allowed him to make it better for people who got to know him.”
IceCats Captain Mark Ostebo agrees with Logan’s father, and hasn’t seen anything negative since Logan’s death, only the positive influence of his memory.
According to his family, 18-year-old Logan lived his life in preparation for a mission. However, that mission came in a different form than what he had anticipated, his parents said.
“Jaxon sensed something about his life and the fact that it may be different.” Jaxon’s mother said. “I don’t know if he knew exactly what it meant, but I think he felt a need to live his life completely. He did not want to have any regrets.”
While the Logan family is working through the reality of their loss, they say they have no doubts about the game of hockey.
“We still skate, we still watch the game, we still enjoy the game,” Logan’s father said. “We don’t feel like hockey took Jaxon. His father in Heaven saw this as an opportunity to call him home.”
Jaxon’s influence is still seen throughout the national hockey community.
The Northern Colorado hockey Web site has a memorial to Logan saying, “It was an honor to play hockey against such a passionate, talented young man.”
At the request of other teams across the country, they now wear helmet stickers of Logan’s number 11.
The IceCats asked the Logan family how best to memorialize their son.
“Jaxon’s legacy is always in the background on this team,” IceCats head coach Ed Gantt said.
This legacy was made a reality when Logan’s jersey was retired and a banner in his honor now hangs behind the IceCats bench during games.
The Logan family is confident that their son and brother is with his God.
“Jaxon would tell all involved that he’s doing fine,” Mike said. “We have no doubt.”