Montreal Canadiens legend Guy Lafleur will have a national funeral to be held May 3, Quebec’s premier said Sunday.
Premier François Legault announced on Twitter that Lafleur’s family had agreed to national honours for the late hockey great, with the funeral to be held at 11 a.m. at Mary Queen of the World Cathedral in downtown Montreal.
Ahead of the funeral, Lafleur will lie in state at Bell Centre on May 1 from noon to 8 p.m. and May 2 from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Legault had made the offer to the family in the hours following Lafleur’s death Friday at age 70 following a battle with lung cancer.
The premier described Lafleur as someone who showed Quebecers how to be winners. He said the government was looking at other tributes including the possible renaming of a highway in the Outaouais region in western Quebec where Lafleur was raised.
“This national funeral in homage to the memory of Mr. Guy Lafleur testifies to all the admiration and all the love that Quebecers have for him,” Legault said in a statement on Sunday. “He will have marked our history and our national culture forever. We will therefore pay him a deserved tribute, for the great man he was.”
National honours were also granted to Canadiens stars Maurice Richard and Jean Beliveau when they died.
The Montreal Canadiens organization released a statement announcing events leading up to the funeral.
“Out of respect for the public, which has supported Guy over the years, the Lafleur family has agreed to share their grief with the community,” the organization said.
“And in keeping with the family’s wishes, all activities will reflect the image of the late hockey legend: they will be humble and accessible.”
A special pre-game ceremony will be held as the Montreal Canadiens take on the Boston Bruins on Sunday night.
Canadiens players will wear a ceremonial No. 10 patch on their jerseys in tribute to Lafleur, a Hall of Famer and five-time Stanley Cup champion.