Theo Fleury will be in Kelowna on Jan. 11 as part of Inspire Kelowna. (Facebook)

Former NHLer coming to Kelowna to recognize first responders

Theo Fluery joins the Kelowna Professional Fire Fighters’ Charitable Society Jan. 11

B.C. first responders will be recognized and supported when former NHL star Theo Fleury comes to Kelowna next year.

Fleury, a 15-year hockey pro turned motivational speaker, comes to Kelowna to bring attention to the mental health challenges first responders face at the event named, Inspire Kelowna.

In partnership with the BC First Responder Resiliency Program, the Kelowna Professional Firefighters’ Charitable Society and the BC Professional Firefighters’ Burn Fund, Fleury shares stories from his own personal recovery to recognize the help first responders need.

READ MORE: First responders in Kelowna for mental health workshop

In 2009, Fleury’s autobiography detailed his life’s struggles during his professional career which included drug addiction, sexual abuse and mental illness. Playing with Fire was a Canadian best-seller and gave insight to Fleury’s life as a Stanley Cup champion and Olympic gold medalist all the while battling his inner demons.

On the event’s website, it reads that 22 fire responders were lost due to suicide in 2018.

The Inspire Kelowna charity event will support firefighters and other first responders across the province.

“Audiences will leave Inspire Kelowna feeling motivated to confront challenges and heartened that quitting is never an option,” reads the site.

Inspire Kelowna is Jan. 11 at the Kelowna Community Theatre.

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