MONTREAL—Hockey legend Jean Beliveau, who died on Dec. 2 at the age of 83, was laid to rest Dec. 10 in Montreal, with Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Gov. Gen. David Johnston, and Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard among the dignitaries at the service.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman was among those who travelled to Montreal for the funeral. “He was just great to be around,” he told reporters before the service. “And he’s going to be terribly missed.”
Former players Yvan Cournoyer, Phil Goyette, Guy Lafleur, Robert Rousseau, Serge Savard, and Jean-Guy Talbot were the pallbearers, while teammates Ken Dryden and Dickie Moore were among those who delivered eulogies.
“He treated everyone with respect,” Dryden said during the service. “He said the right things and in the right way, in French and in English, because that’s what he believed and that’s what he was.”
Thousands of people had quietly filed into the arena on Sunday and Monday to pay their respects to Beliveau and shake hands with his wife, Elise.
Beliveau won the Stanley Cup 10 times as a player and seven more as a team executive. He entered the Hockey Hall of Fame the year after his retirement in 1971.