Stock died of complications of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) also known as Lou Gherig’s disease Friday night. He was 39.
Stock, was diagnosed with ALS nearly two years ago in December 2014, just a few short months after taking part in his first ice-bucket challenge with his wife Paula and their three children.
The news came as a huge shock to the family, but they quickly decided to fight and do everything possible to create something positive, and thus “Team Stock” was born.
“We felt we had to do our part to continue raising awareness,” Paula Stock said in an interview with Global News in July 2015.
The family readily agreed to help spread awareness about the disease behind the ice cubes and were featured in an ALS public service announcement.
Dean Stock also shared his brother’s love of hockey. The siblings grew up playing hockey in Dollard-des-Ormeaux and then went on to play in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League in Victoriaville. Dean continued to play hockey at St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia and eventually joined the East Coast hockey league while PJ went on to the NHL.
Stock was formerly captain of the Halifax Mooseheads during the 1997-98 season. Mooseheads’ assistant coach and former opponent Jim Midgley fondly remembered playing against Stock and called him tough.
“He was one of the toughest players I’ve ever played against. He just played the game hard and the right way,” Midgley said in a statement Friday.
Former teammates took to twitter Saturday to express their grief.