Toronto Maple Leafs icon Howie Meeker dies at 97

Howie Meeker in 1947. (Photo via Wikipedia)

Former Canadian hockey star, Howie Meeker has passed away at age 97.

A┬áspokesman for the NHL team confirmed Meeker’s passing on Sunday.┬áThe right-winger and Kitchener-born hockey player made his NHL debut with the Toronto Maple Leafs during its 1946-1947 season, and went on to help the Leafs’ win the Stanley Cup for three consecutive years, and once more during the 1950-1951 season.

Meeker also dabbled in politics. He spent two years as a Progressive Conservative MP while playing with the Leafs. In 1951, Meeker won the federal by-election in the Ontario riding of Waterloo South, though he did not seek re-election in 1953.

The Maple Leafs alum stopped playing for the team in 1954. He continued to share his love for hockey with others over the years by coaching, and teaching hockey schools in Canada, and the United States. He also spent many decades involved with charity work in the Canadian Special Olympics, before taking a step back in 2018. In 2010, Meeker was named a member of the Order of Canada.