Hitmen, Siksika First Nation partner to bring Orange Shirt Day to Calgary’s Saddledome

The Calgary Hitmen and Siksika First Nation have partnered to create an orange Hitmen jersey to use in an afternoon affair Sunday.

The two say their relationship has blossomed over the last several years, to bring this event to a Western Hockey League game.

Phyllis Webstad, founder of Orange Shirt Day and the ambassador for the Orange Shirt Society, is also in attendance.

Siksika Nation Chief Ouray Crowfoot says the Hitmen have been a viable partner, with the nation even hosting games during the pandemic at their local arena.

“Building relationships that are meaningful, equitable and that are going to provide opportunities for our children that we didn’t have previously,” he said.

Webstad says she received the jersey with her name on it. It was when she first put it on Sunday morning, that she realized the sentimental value.

“It has the lace and the three buttons, just like the shirt that my granny bought me,” she said.

“I teared up looking in the mirror.”

For the Hitmen, they say its about showcasing the values and beliefs their organization stand for.

Vice-president Mike Moore says he’s hopeful that the Hitmen are leading the way in bringing about change.

“This isn’t a check the box, this isn’t a put your hand up and say; ‘we said something.’ This is action, and it’s critical action.”

This is the second time the Hitmen have honoured Orange Shirt Day with a special hockey game.

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