In March, Star Tribune hockey writer Michael Russo wrote about Carter Casey, a 17-year-old from Breckenridge, Minn., who was signed to a one-day contract by the Wild. Casey was fighting a rare form of muscle cancer and the "deal" was arranged through the Make-A-Wish foundation.
At the press conference, Casey showed some attitude that the Wild could have used in his back-and-forth with coach Bruce Boudreau.
At one point, Boudreau told him, “We’re going to use your spirit as a way to motivate us.”
Casey's reply before that night's game against San Jose: “Get the W.”
Casey died over the weekend after a 20-month fight with spindle cell rhabdomyosarcoma.
In an obituary, Chris Murphy of the Fargo Forum captured the impact that Casey had on Breckenridge, a city on the Minnesota-North Dakota border. One of Casey's friends, Carson Yaggie, told Murphy: "The entire community is just dead. Our hearts are completely dropped. It's like there's just a space in the community that will always be empty."
The school's athletic director recalled a visit intended to cheer up Casey before one of his surgeries. It didn't go the way Chad Fredericksen expected: "I didn't realize until later that he was comforting me, rather than the other way around. That is who Carter is, and that is how he has fought this thing and been an inspiration throughout. What a wonderful opportunity I have had to learn from him about life."
And here's the FSN video from Casey's visit to the Wild in March.