Local hockey player, North Country community honoring life of beloved hockey coach

ABC50 NOW

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (WWTI) — The hockey community across New York State has come together to honor the life of minor league hockey coach Andrew St. Louis who passed away in the final days of March 2021.

St. Louis was a hockey coach for the Canton minor-league hockey team, the St. Lawrence Steel. On March 28, 2021, he was coaching a hockey game in Buffalo, New York where he suffered a medical emergency. Andrew was rushed to the hospital where he went through numerous surgeries and eventually passed away. 

Leading a major campaign to support Andrew’s family is 12-year-old Gerald Woodruff, who was coached under St. Louis since he was five years old, most of his hockey career. 

Gerald shared that he realized he needed to do something as soon as his coach was hospitalized.

“I played on several different teams with them from when I was a little “mite,” to just as he passed away,” shared Gerald. “It is this so sad. He’s always had my back. He always went above and beyond to help me and other kids.”

Within a day, the GoFundMe started by Gerald had hit its goal of $70 thousand; now heading to a new goal of $85,000.

“I first had the idea when we heard that he was hospitalized,” expressed Gerald. “I wanted to bring everyone together and, not for the money, but to show the St Louis family that there were so many people there for them, and they’re not alone in this.

Adding, “it just showed how many people care about the St. Louis family.”

The young hockey player reflected on how he will remember what he considers his biggest influence in his hockey career.

“I will remember him as the way I got to where I am today; from the day I stepped on the ice with him,” stated Gerald. “He’s helped me through it. He’s helped me skate better, shoot better. Everything I knew about hockey for the most part was from him.”

Gerald concluded by saying, “I hope everyone remembers him as a loving dad, a level son, brother, father, and like on ice hockey coach, he made such a difference. I don’t even think ‘quitting’ or ‘stopping’ as it was in Andrew St. Louis’s dictionary.”

Andrew St. Louis, 37, resided in Saranac Lake. He is survived by his wife Shelly and two children Carson and Lexi. He is also survived by his parents, Shari and Marty St. Louis, brother Matt, as well as many extended family members and closed friends.

Services for Andrew St. Louis will be held this weekend, with calling hours on April 2 at the M.B. Clark, Inc. funeral home in Lake Placid from 4 p.m to 7 p.m., and the Funeral Service on April 3 at St. Agnes Church in Lake Placid At 11 a.m.

The full fundraiser for the St. Louis family can be found on the GoFundMe website. Additionally, in lieu of flowers, individuals are asked to donate to their favorite youth sports organization.

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