Oilers prospect Kristians Pelss missing (updated)

Kristians Pelss, a 2010 Oilers draft pick, is missing in his home country of Latvia, with one Latvian news source reporting that he is dead – a report that has yet to be independently verified .

Arturs Vaiders, a reporter with an outlet in Latvia, appears (via Google Translate) to say he has confirmed information that the 20-year old Oilers prospect drowned under unexplained circumstances:

I have just returned from North America was one of the most talented young Latvian hockey players. He has died so far and still unexplained circumstances. Information that he has drowned and unfortunately this information is confirmed.

The police and state rescue service are quoted in the report as verifying that a man jumped into the Daugava River from the Stone Bridge in Riga, Latvia (pictured below), but declined to identify the man as Pelss or say whether that person had been found, dead or alive.

Pelss spent the 2012-13 season in the minors, playing for the Oilers affiliates in Oklahoma and Stockton. He was playing under a two-way entry-level contract that ran until 2015.

UPDATE. There have been various Twitter reports claiming that the family of Pelss disputes the report that Pelss is dead; the following comes from a Russian news agency:

This story will be further updated once more details emerge. In the meantime, Oilers Nation reminds our readers that information is sketchy, and the initial report that Pelss drowned has yet to be confirmed. Even if that report turns out to be accurate on the principle facts, the exact details of what happened are unknown. We also strongly encourage commenters to show respect for Pelss and his family at this difficult time.

  • G Money

    Man, what a horrible shock. My heart goes out to his family.

    My business partner took his own life just a few short months ago, and stories like this really cut deep.

    • 24% body fat

      Two enthusiastic thumbs up for your defense of the internet as something more than a troll cave. And yes, I was one of the commentators removed by the above policy.

      Prayers go out to the Pelss family.

  • User I’d rather have Shock and Awe, over just Bold has been banned from the site for the time being. We don’t have a specific policy about wildly disrespectful speculation into the fate of a missing person, but his comments in this piece were completely intolerable.

    • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

      You’ve done the right thing here JW….no questions asked.

      I can’t really speak for him as I don’t know him but…

      This seems out of character for Shock & Awe…

      I would predict a brief apology if and when he’s allowed back in.

    • Milli

      Thank you Jonathon. Nobody ever knows what goes on in a persons mind, their stressors or coping skills. Thankfully, most of us can find a friend or professional to talk about a crisis we find ourselves dealing with. There is a family suffering an unbearable loss right now that are probably inconsolable. To have such an insensitive dink come on here, with such offensive and obscene remarks, should never be given the privilege of commenting on this site. Everyone on here knows someone that has tried suicide either successfully or unsuccessfully. It is never funny and never a joke.

    • StHenriOilBomb

      I don’t agree that the question in comment was worthy of a ban. It was in no way demeaning toward KP, or anyone else in his situation. Bringing humor to tragedy – when not at the expense of anyone involved – is okay. It would be impossible for me to deal with the world otherwise. It was a shot at the Oilers, and not much more.

      It is not my site though, and whatever atmosphere you would like to promote is your business. Many of your other patrons reacted fiercely as well, so I am not surprised that that conversation was removed – just a little disheartened that it caused such a negative reaction.

      PS: no problem if you want to remove this comment, too. I didn’t know where else to say it.

  • Gaylord Meatface

    Shock and awe guy:

    I doubt you would be pragmatic about a family member of yours dying.

    If was mental illness which drove him to this; it was not a choice as you say. Illness is not a choice. Your comments you made were.

    Grow the F up otherwise you will someday have a harsh reality lesson.

  • Craig1981

    To…I’d rather have Shock and Awe, over just Bold….

    Hey bud is this for you getting extra attention online???…cause ya are way out of line with issues of etiqutte and sympathy for others dude. GROW UP!!!

    Whether Pelss chose this or not or that it was others not in sports (regular people) who lost their lives…this is tragic nonetheless.

    Man!!!! What if this was your own kid or your nephew or a close friend’s kid? Are ya that insensitive to tell those parents or yourself the same stuff ya just wrote/how ya wrote it?

    Go get counselling dude..

  • The Soup Fascist

    I have a son the same age and I can’t tell you how bad I am feeling right now. Sad that a kid with what would appear to be everything going for him would make that choice (if reports are true). God Bless all family and friends that are impacted by this terrible news. I will be giving my kids an extra hug tonight. Tragic.

  • To…I’d rather have Shock and Awe, over just Bold….

    Whatta Stupid and Bad Taste Joke Comment…

    This is about a life of someone, whether pelss or not…not a joke for sports/Oilers.

    That being said…judgmentally…I believe ya didnt mean harm or rudeness intentionally..just ya didnt think when ya wrote that.

    If it is Pelss, or another..my condloences are being given to the family and close friends.

    I was pulling for this kid to make it to the Oilers in the next couple of seasons upcoming.


  • Connor Snipes

    Horrible story if this is confirmed…

    If it is true, can we assume depression or another mental illness was involved? That bridge and river look pretty daunting. Eeesh. Horrible times for his family and the hockey world.

  • Jamie B.

    God, he’s just a kid. Let it somehow not be true.

    Always enjoyed watching him play for the Oil Kings, knowing he was an Oilers prospect. This is just horrible and depressing.

  • Craig1981

    And I wouldn’t disrepect a single person out of those 25 who passed yesterday.
    And no, I feel for people who felt so terrible they took their own life. I have known more than 1 person you took their life and not once did I speak poor of them. Extreme depression is a terrible disese you or I might not be able to understand, which means we shoudn’t judge it.