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Brad McCrimmon remembered fondly

The former Bruin was killed in the KHL plane crash today.

Brad McCrimmon, who was the Bruins' first-round draft pick in 1979 and played for the team until 1982, was killed today in the plane crash that nearly wiped out the KHL's Lokomotiv Yaroslavl team.

Forty-three people -- of 45 on board -- were killed when the team's charter flight to Minsk crashed on takeoff in Russia.

McCrimmon was the team's coach. A defenseman during his playing days, he scored 17 goals during three seasons with Boston.

He's being remembered fondly by peers and friends tonight:

- Fellow coach Ken Hitchcock told the Washington Times that McCrimmon "sacrificed" a lot in going to Russia. McCrimmon's ultimate goal, Hitchcock said, was to parlay experience with Lokomotiv into a head coaching job in the NHL.

- Former Calgary Flames teammate Perry Berazan told TSN that McCrimmon influenced "thousands" of people "in a positive way."

- Globe and Mail reporter Eric Duhatschek took to his blog to call McCrimmon "one of most interesting characters I’d ever run across in 30-plus years
of covering hockey, as close to a friend as you can have without
stepping over that boundary that divides the press from the management
team."

- The CBC reported on mourning for McCrimmon in his hometown of Plenty, Sask.