Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin has donated the equivalent of $60,000 to help victims and their families in the wake of a tragedy in his hometown, Magnitogorsk, Russia, according to several reports.
The Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation has added another $30,000 to the cause, according to the team.
“It’s amazing,” Malkin said Thursday of the foundation’s donation. “Our organization they do everything for the best. … We’re family here.
“I hope it helps the people a little bit.”
There was an explosion at an apartment complex on New Year’s Eve, killing 39 people. Reports blamed a gas leak. On Jan. 2, Malkin wore skates with messages of condolence to support a day of remembrance in Russia. His follow-up donation was 4 million rubles.
“It’s pretty tough,” said Malkin, 32, who grew up in Magnitogorsk and played there in the Kontinental Hockey League before joining the Penguins. He said the accident happened on the same street where he lived, about a five- to 10-minute walk away.
“It’s the most I can do right now,” he said of the monetary contribution for the event that happened on a major holiday. “It’s a big tragedy at home. I try to help, just do something to help the people. It’s my hometown. I love the city so much. I love the people who live in the city. It’s so hard. December 31 is a huge day for Russia. I hope it never happens again.”