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Goalie World Mourns Passing of Matiss Kivlenieks
InGoal Magazine, the goalie union, and entire hockey world was shocked and saddened to learn of the death of Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Mattis Kivlenieks on Monday.
The 24-year-old Latvian died after a tragic fireworks accident in Novi, Michigan on Sunday night. The Blue Jackets and Latvian Hockey Federation announced Kivlenieks’ death, and an outpouring of support and prayers for friends, family and teammates of the young goalie quickly followed on social media.
“Life is so precious and can be so fragile,”
Columbus general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said in a tweet. “Hug your loved ones today. RIP Matiss, you will be dearly missed.”
Kivlenieks, who is from Riga, represented Latvia at the World Junior Championships in 2015 and 2016 and most recently at the 2021 World Championship, playing four games.
Undrafted, Kivlenieks signed with the Blue Jackets as a free agent in May 2017 and played eight NHL games for the club over four seasons, including two this past season. He spent most of his time with Cleveland in the American Hockey League, where he played with and was coached by Brad Thiessen.
InGoal Magazine joins everyone in the goalie world in expressing our condolences to Kivlenieks family, friends and teammates at this difficult time. Rest In Peace, Mattis.
Shocking, devastating, and heartbreaking loss of wonderful human being with radiant smile, a tremendous young man, Matiss Kivlenieks will be deeply missed. May his memory be a blessing for his mom, Astrida, his teammates, friends, and family. #matiss— Jay Grossman (@Jay_Grossman) July 5, 2021
Words are hard to find right now, but the day we put the same jersey on meant that we would be family forever. When my kids play Kivi “the kid” in goal it will have a greater meaning!! RIP kid, love you brother 😢 #cbj #familyforever pic.twitter.com/J2te4QuAB9— Nathan Gerbe (@NathanGerbe14) July 5, 2021
Hard to put words to the news this morning. Hard to understand.— Eddie Lack🇸🇪🇺🇸🇨🇦 (@eddielack) July 5, 2021
Such a genuine, happy, smiling person.
My heart goes out to his family and everyone he touched on his journey.
You won’t be forgotten
RIP Kivi https://t.co/gSIqq7y5k6
Shattered by the sudden passing of Kivi-the kid. 24 yrs young. Tremendous work ethic. Amazing athleticism and unbelievably happy at the rink at all times. Your presence will be missed. Rest easy, pal. Thoughts & prayers to his family/friends & hockey community. https://t.co/mn153bXp2g— Zac Dalpe (@ZacDalpe22) July 5, 2021
We are shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of Matiss Kivlenieks and send our heartfelt condolences to the Kivlenieks family and to all of his teammates and friends at this time.— Cleveland Monsters (@monstershockey) July 5, 2021
We’ll miss you so much, Kivi. Rest In Peace.https://t.co/JbUyyDNLVg pic.twitter.com/000cF0Kl4j