Canadiens family remembers Eddy Palchak


Eddy Palchak’s life was celebrated by family and friends and roses in the Habs’ famous red, white and blue Tuesday in Montreal-suburban Dorval.
Peter McCabe, Gazette

COLUMN: Eddy Palchak remembered as ‘an incredible guy, an incredible friend’

AUDIO: Yvan Cournoyer | Guy Carbonneau | Dickie Moore | Guy Lafleur | Rick Green | Réjean Houle | Dr. David Mulder | Jacques Demers | Equipment manager Pierre Gervais

The rich life of Canadiens trainer, equipment manager and jack of all trades (and then some) Eddy Palchak was celebrated at a funeral Tuesday, a service attended by a galaxy of Hall of Famers, team executives, former Habs and family, friends and strangers alike. Eddy was 71 when he died on Nov. 16 at Montreal General Hospital.

I spoke with many this morning who recalled their memories of Eddy and what he meant to the 10 Stanley Cup champions and other teams for which he worked, becoming a friend and confidante to players whose actions he keenly observed yet never reported to inquisitive team management.

Photos below by Peter McCabe, Gazette

Dickie Moore with former GM Irving Grundman.

From left: Guy Carbonneau, Yvan Cournoyer, Guy Lafleur, Rick Green.

Former Canadiens Sergio Momesso (left), Réjean Houle.

Two captains: Guy Carbonneau (left), Yvan Cournoyer.

The Flower, who wore No. 10 because Eddy Palchak suggested he take it.

Former Canadien Yvon Lambert.


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  2. nunacanadien says:

    I shook hands with Eddie in 1975 when I was just a small kid. Eddie asked me how long you been a hab and I said ever since I could remember….and he just gave me his classic smile. God bless you Eddie, and look after your family. Classic hab.

  3. Danno says:

    As we can plainly see, the Montreal Canadiens are more than just a hockey team. It’s a family. And Eddy was a special member of that big, beautiful family. Eddy worked hard and did so many things behind the scenes that sometimes went unnoticed – it was this selfless dedication and passion for the club that in no small way contributed to the Canadiens’ success during some some of its most glorious years.

    Eddy was loved by all and will be missed.


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  4. Habsssssssswin says:

    The rememberance and funeral for Eddie Palchak:
    As a Canadiens fan, this was without a doubt one of the classiest things I’ve ever seen by the TEAM, and there were many. The Habs organization is filled with great people , both past and present who make and do us proud. Both on and off the ice. Rest in Peace Mr. Palchak. You obviously left a well deserved and lasting impression.


  5. DorvalTony says:

    They don’t make Canadiens like that any more.

    Little giants: Henri Richard, Mats Naslund, Yvan Cournoyer, Aurel Joliat, Howie Morenz, Guy Carbonneau, Newsy Lalonde.

  6. Hobie Hansen says:

    Not to get too personal here but I had a long and challenging week leading up to last Saturday night. So when I cracked a beer and sat down to watch the Canadiens game on Saturday night and the tribute to Eddy Palchak came on, I got a little emotional.

    All my closest friends and I grew up playing hockey on a outdoor rink in St. Lazare, QC. And there was an old French guy there who cared for the ice and kept the chalet swept and tidy.

    While we were out one the ice until 10:00 P.M. on almost every night of the week, the old French guy would be sitting in the chalet, smoking cigarettes and listening to the Habs game on the radio.

    He would get so excited to hear us tell him which one of us scored a goal or he’d run over in amazement anytime one of us bought a new stick or a hockey jersey.

    He was just ultra thrilled to be around the outdoor rink and listen to the kids tell their stories about what happened on the ice or get into a discussion about the Habs.

    And after seeing Eddy behind the bench hundreds of times while growing up, talking to the players with his eyed lit up after a big goal, I always pictured Eddy being exactly the same way as the old French guy at the outdoor rink.

    Everything good that hockey stands for!

    • Rob D says:

      Oh yes..that’s the hold hockey has on Canadians. SPent many an hour at the rink(s) in our small N. Ontario city. Met similiar selfless people who kept things going and it pains me at times at how little I actually appreciated it. Eddy is one of those behind the scenes guys without whom hockey wouldn’t function.

  7. Hoegarden says:

    RIP Eddy.

  8. RetroMikey says:

    RIP Eddy RIP

    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

  9. montreal ace says:

    One of the things I love about following the Habs, is how even when they stop playing, they still support each other as a team. RIP Eddy

  10. immortalhab says:

    We’ll miss you Eddy. Thanks for your contribution to the cups. Condolences to the Palchak family.

  11. 24moreCups says:

    Saw clips of the funeral on the new this evening it was very touching to hear all the kinds words everyone had to say about him.

    I’m a bit to young to remember his time with Montreal but he will surely be missed.

    Glad we won that game for him!

    RIP Eddy Palchak.

  12. slychard says:

    For me memories from the mid 70’s until I moved to the states before you retired, family! Truly. God bless Palchak.

    Kiss my hAbSS!!!

  13. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …lot of nostalgia today in Habland (…and Alouetteland) for Myself
    …Eddie Palchak used to frequent the same deli and tavern as I in Alexis Nihon when I worked as an architect in that building …lunches next to Eddy and Les Boys, and occasional nightcaps at the Bali-hi Bar …disco-ing with My girl next to Lafleur and His girl(s) at the time on top of Place Ville Marie …Lambert on Crescent
    …the Grantland Rice film on hockey Mike featured in His column was made the year I was born in 1947, and brought-back indelible scenes I knew as a boy …Mike was right, We had serious professional-grade winters and snowstorms back in those days, and it’s quite humorous hearing newer generations complaining of our winters today …snow and slippery sidewalks and driveways meant HOCKEY in some form, whether it was with a puck, tennis ball or piece of ice One would shape
    …Hal Patterson’s death too, another tick of the clock for Myself …Hal Patterson’s son, Chuck Hunsinger’s son and I were classmates in elementary school … …I lived on Ridgewood, and They in the old Rockhill Apartments (since replaced by the ‘newer’ Rockhill Apartment complex) on Cotes des Neiges …We all with Our other buddies would play soccer and football across the street in fields not all that far from
    tombstones of the Cotes des Neiges Cemetery
    …tick …tock …tick …tock …tick …tock
    …time flies when You are having fun, doesn’t it ?

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    • MasterHab says:

      I’m nearly 20 years younger than you but, ironically, I too live in Surrey (BC, not the one in the UK) and back in college I lived for a time on Forest Hill, and CDN, not far from Ridgewood. Small world.

      I remember Eddy vividly and while I never met him I did see him around the Forum and at Alexis Nihon Plaza from time to time. Hal Patterson of course was before my time but my mom and dad spoke of his and Sam Etcheverry’s exploits often.

      • Habitant in Surrey says:

        …which part of Surrey Pat ?
        …yes, a much smaller world than We realize sometimes
        …I remember quite a surprise of a very unexpected reunion with a very special Montreal girlfriend I had lost track of in my late-teens/early-twenties while entering a revolving entrance door of a 5-star hotel in …Hong Kong almost 30 years later 🙂
        …nothing surprises Me anymore
        …by the way, in the early-50s My parents and My sister & I lived on Forest Hill for a year or so as well …PLUS Mr. Quintin, My son’s first name is …Quentin ! 🙂

        Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

        • MasterHab says:

          You must post on another board if you know my name. Forum Ice perhaps?

          For the record, I live in Guildford (108th & 152nd area) and prior to that in Cedar Hills (96th & 132nd area)

    • bigjames says:

      the carb! i had my first quasi date at the bali hi. and watched the 86 cup win at the carb! memories…

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Your posts brings me back like yesterday my friends. We lived and grew up in Mtl. and area in a fantastic era.

      Then it was the monetary and business capital of Canada, best looking women, greatest hockey city in the world, Alouettes were riding high, both French and English had better respect for one another.

      We were all very fortunate to see a quality of life at a young age to carry with us.

      The largest gift and Quebec export to all parts of N. America, has to be our Montreal Canadiens classy Hockey club and fans.!!!!!

  14. Habsolutely says:

    I have so many great memories of habs games at the forum with Eddy behind the bench doing his thing.


  15. Willy the bum says:

    Every game I’ve been since I was a kid and seen one more time at the Centennial game, the rich history came mostly from Eddy and he will be missed.

    Thank you for everything to keep the our hockey spirits alive and will still be alive when you’re in heaven, Eddy!

    P.S. Carbo looks better than me, dang it!

  16. Ian Cobb says:

    We stood a moment for a great tribute to Eddy at the Bell Center Summit game Saturday night. Everyone loved being around him. He will be missed.
    Put Summit pictures on here

  17. piter says:

    Rest In Peace Eddy, Habs Forever!

  18. RIP Eddy

    Loved the Moore audio clip.


    Eyes on The Prize! and on Twitter

  19. ProHabs says:

    Yup Carbo should be coaching this team with that duster. RIP Eddy.

  20. G-Man says:

    RIP Eddy. You helped the best be the best through 10 Cups.
    Condolences to the Palchak family and all his fiends.

  21. Psycho29 says:

    RIP Mr.Palchak….A true Habs’ legend….

  22. Habfan4lfe says:

    Ya Carbo does have the best movember I’ve seen too.

    RIP Eddy, my condolences to the family.

  23. cuzzie says:

    We are Family. Habs Forever!

    Stay Thirsty My Friends!

  24. Mothstoflame says:

    RIP Eddy Palchak..
    My condolences to the family.

    On a side note, Carbo has the best movember i have seen in a while

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