The GoFundMe account collecting funds for the Humboldt Broncos closed at midnight Wednesday after raising more than $15 million in less than two weeks, as more than 140,000 people donated from more than 80 countries.
It is the second-largest GoFundMe campaign globally, trailing only the $21.5 million raised for the Time's Up Legal Defense Fund.
The Broncos, a team of 16- to 21-year-olds in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League, were en route to their playoff game on April 6 when their bus crashed with a truck carrying peat moss. The death toll is up to 16; among the fatalities were the Broncos' head coach, players and the bus driver.
As of the latest update provided by the team Tuesday, nine people remain hospitalized, with two in critical condition.
On Thursday, the Saskatchewan Royal Canadian Mounted Police assistant commissioner Curtis Zablocki said significant resources are being used to investigate the crash, though there is no timeline for its completion. Zablocki said the truck driver has been cooperating with authorities, but it is unclear if he blew past a stop sign or why he was in the middle of the intersection.
Authorities have determined the road was clear and the sun was shining when the accident occurred, at approximately 5 p.m. Vehicle logs and engine control modules are still being analyzed while investigators plan to conduct a re-enactment of what happened at the crash site.
The team announced that funds donated through the GoFundMe campaign will be transferred to a newly created nonprofit called the Humboldt Memorial Fund Inc. An advisory committee is being established and will make recommendations on how the fund will be allocated.
The original goal for the GoFundMe campaign was $5,000.
"First and foremost, the Broncos' volunteer board of directors would like to express their tremendous love and sincere gratitude to everyone who has generously donated time and money to support our organization and its families, as we navigate through this dark and heart-wrenching time," the page reads.
The crash has sent shock waves globally, especially in the hockey community. Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby wrote personal messages to each of the crash survivors. Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews and Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid each paid visits to Humboldt and attended memorial services.