Visitation, funeral arrangements announced for ex-NHLer Zezel

TORONTO – The funeral for former NHL forward Peter Zezel will be held Friday in Mississauga, Ont.

Zezel, who had struggled on and off with a rare blood disease called hemolytic anemia for the past 10 years, died Tuesday at age 44.

The funeral will take place Friday morning at St. Sava Serbian Orthodox Church in Mississauga. A visitation will be held at DeMarco Funeral Home in Woodbridge, Ont., Thursday afternoon.

In 873 NHL games with Philadelphia, St. Louis, Washington, Toronto, Dallas, New Jersey and Vancouver, Zezel recorded 219 goals and 389 assists and was a plus-39.

Ontario’s lieutenant-governor offered his condolences to Zezel’s family on Wednesday.

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“I have known Peter for several years, and had the pleasure of interviewing him on television on a number of occasions,” Lt.-Gov. David Onley said in a statement. “My son, Michael, participated in Peter’s hockey and sports camps for three years and enjoyed working with him.

“As an ambassador for the world of hockey, Peter will be sadly missed.”

The family has requested in lieu of flowers that donations be made in Zezel’s name to the James Birrell Fund at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.

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