Pavol Demitra was 36. In eight seasons with the St. Louis Blues from 1996 to 2004, Demitra had 204 goals and 493 points in 494 games. He also played in the NHL for Los Angeles, Minnesota and Vancouver.
Bob Laine was 72. He was a radio broadcasting legend at CHUM known as "The Voice" whose signature opening was "Good morning world, this is Bob-O. Good morning Bob-O, this is world."
Wade Belak was 35. He racked up 1,263 regular-season penalty minutes during a 15 season NHL career. Six of those 15 seasons were with the Toronto Maple Leafs where we enjoyed his sense of humour and friendly demeanor.
Here's Wade Belak vs Cam Janssen from a 2-1 victory over the Devils in 2007.
This sad news is just breaking, so I don't yet know the cause. I do know that we've heard about the premature passing of far too many NHL players this summer and this one in particular strikes close to home.
Aloysius Cardinal Ambrozic was 81. He was a Roman Catholic cardinal and Archbishop of Toronto since 1990.
Mike Flanagan was 59. He was a pitcher who recorded a 167-143 lifetime record with the Baltimore Orioles and our Toronto Blue Jays from 1975 to 1992.
Here's something I wrote about Mike Flanagan a few years back:
Mike Flanagan was a decent pitcher for the Jays from 1987-1990, but I almost feel guilty calling him a Blue Jay. He was a Baltimore Oriole through and through. He came over in a trade after 12 years as an Oriole and then he re-signed with them after his stint here in Toronto.
Here's a little Mike Flanagan trivia for ya. When we traded for him in '87 he owned more wins (17) and innings pitched (208) against us than any other pitcher.
Nick Ashford was 70. He was one-half of the successful Motown singer-songwriter duo of Ashford and Simpson, who recorded such hits as "Don't Cost You Nothing," "It Seems to Hang On," "Found A Cure" and "Solid."
Jack Layton was 61. He was the New Democratic Party leader who led his party to Official Opposition status in this year’s federal election.
Jani Lane was 47. He was the lead singer for Warrant, best known for the hits "Heaven" and "Cherry Pie".
Here's Jani Lane talking about Cherry Pie, the song he wished he never wrote.
Bubba Smith was 66. He was a defensive star in the NFL and played Moses Hightower, the soft-spoken officer in the "Police Academy" series.
Hideki Irabu was 42. He was the New York Yankees pitcher labelled "The Nolan Ryan of Japan" who went 34-35 with a 5.15 ERA in three seasons.
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