Habs legends Elmer, Butch share the wealth

Canadiens alumni president Réjean Houle has a laugh at one of Elmer Lach’s bon mots before today’s news conference in Pointe-Claire.
Graham Hughes, Gazette

Last December’s retirement of the jerseys of Canadiens Hall of Famers Elmer Lach and Émile (Butch) Bouchard did more than hoist their respective No. 16 and No. 3 to the rafters of the Bell Centre.

The Canadiens, through their Children’s Foundation, gave $25,000 to each man to donate to the charity of their choice.

Bouchard chose Fondation Pinocchio and Projet 80 to share the funds in his name.

Today, Lach took part in a news conference at Pointe-Claire’s Lakeshore General Hospital to donate his $25,000 to the hospital’s foundation for use in its pediatrics department.

The release from the hospital appears below. To both Elmer and Butch: well done!

Hospital news release:

Elmer Lach and the Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation Give $25,000 to the LGH Foundation upon Jersey Retirement

Pointe-Claire, QC – The Lakeshore General Hospital (LGH) Foundation is proud to announce that the proceeds from the retirement of Montreal Canadiens jersey No. 16, worn by legendary Punch Line member Elmer Lach, will be donated to the foundation in a ceremony to be held Nov. 3.

A cheque in the amount of $25,000 will be presented to the LGH Foundation at the ceremony.

Upon Mr. Lach’s request, the funds from his jersey number retirement will be directed to the paediatrics department of the Lakeshore General Hospital.

Renowned hockey broadcaster Dick Irvin Jr. will be on hand to welcome and introduce Mr. Lach, who played on the Montreal Canadiens for 14 seasons, from 1940-1954. Also attending will be Canadiens Alumni Association President Réjean Houle, on behalf of the Canadiens Children’s Foundation. Mr. Houle will present the cheque on behalf of the Montreal Canadiens.

A Hart Memorial Trophy winner, a member of the first NHL All-Star team, and a Hockey Hall-of-Famer since 1966, Mr. Lach is presently the oldest living Montreal Canadiens player. We are truly honoured to be the recipient of his generosity, and to become a part of such a celebrated sports tradition.

The LGH Foundation relies entirely on donor support to improve our community hospital. It strives towards health care excellence in the West Island by acquiring cutting-edge equipment that government funding alone cannot provide.


Today’s cheque presentation ceremony. From left: Canadiens alumni president Réjean Houle; Canadiens legend Elmer Lach; Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation president Silvano Orrino; LGH Foundation chairman Nick Di Tomaso; broadcaster Dick Irvin Jr., whose father, Dick Sr., was Elmer’s only coach with the Canadiens from 1940-54.

Graham Hughes, Gazette

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