Residents of the Santa Clarita Valley were deeply saddened when two West Ranch alumni were killed and a third was severely injured in a car crash in November. On Friday, the West Ranch hockey team honored one of its own.
Sebastien “Bash” Gallegos was one of the victims who didn’t survive the crash. He was a former West Ranch hockey player and was well-loved by his teammates, as shown at his memorial at the Valencia Ice Station during a Wildcats’ home game. The community showed its love for Bash and support for his family by showing up in full force for the event.
The team was happy with how the night went, despite losing to the Burbank Cougars, 10-1.
“It was awesome to see that many people in attendance,” said head coach Scott Warr. “Minus us not winning, I thought the night went very well to honor him and his family. It’s just tragic.”
West Ranch hockey went all out for Bash, someone who meant so much to the team. Before the game, the team, joined by a few alumni, formed a circle at center ice for a moment of silence. Vice President of the club Stacey Titter even gave a speech on behalf of Bash before the game.
“It was very emotional,” Titter said. “Just the outpouring of love and support for Bash and his family. It was really evident the impact he had on so many people as an 18-year-old kid. It was very fulfilling to do this small gesture for Bash and his family.”
The team did not stop honoring its fallen comrade there. It was well-known that Bash’s favorite color is red. The team wore two stickers on their helmets. One was a red circle with his name and number on the inside, the other was a red “B” with a wing and a crown. Fans of the Wildcats also showed support for him by wearing red clothing.
“A lot of people were honoring Bash by wearing red,” Warr said. “The kid was a great competitor. One of those guys in the locker room that can get the boys pumped up. It’s just a tragic loss.”
The team also wore custom jerseys, all brandishing his number, 38, and Bash across the back. After the game, all of the members of the varsity squad signed one of the jerseys to present to Bash’s parents.
“I talked with his mom and she just said how special it was, what we did for Bash, and she had never seen anything like that before,” Titter said.
Now with some closure, the community will try to heal from this tragic event, but never forget the legacy of Bash.
“I just know he’s going to be missed by a lot of people,” Warr said. “Any time he stepped on the ice, he gave it everything he had for you. He’s going to be deeply missed.”