Cornwall ON – Pat Burns has passed away. I only had the chance to work with him once, back in the 90’s. It was a fund raiser for the Starbright Foundation in Montreal. He graciously took a Saturday afternoon off.
Mr. Burns left Montreal just as my career in hockey was gaining steam, but I never heard a single player say anything bad about him and you can’t say that for too many coaches in hockey.
Pat had been suffering from Cancer and he battled the disease like he would a hockey game; like a true warrior and winner.
The former police officer was a true inspiration in life and with his struggles near the end of his life.
He was an Eastern Conference kind of guy with a penchant for gritty defence. His career started with Montreal, but he went to Toronto, Boston and finally New Jersey where he coached the Stanley Cup winning Devils in 2003.
RIP Pat Burns April 4, 1952 – November 19, 2010