Noel Picard was lucky. To begin his career with the storied Montreal Canadiens and to win a Stanley Cup in his first season (in 1965) is something that few NHL players are able to experience.
Being an original member of an expansion franchise is also an experience unique to only a few players.
Tripping Bobby Orr as he scores a Stanley Cup winning goal against your team? Well, that’s an experience that belongs to Noel Picard and to Noel Picard alone.
Picard passed away yesterday at the age of 78. Blues legend Bobby Plager had this to say about his friend:
“Noel Picard was one of the best friends and teammates I had here,” Blues defenseman Bob Plager told the team's website on Wednesday night. “It's tough to hear. Noel was such a big, happy-go-lucky guy and enjoyed life. He was the life of everything. One of the most important parts of the team in the early days was Noel Picard. He gave our star players room to be star players. Everybody in this city had Noel Picard stories. Some of them could be a little crazy, but those were the true ones.”
Picard leaves behind a wife, Viviane, and two children, Annie and Dan.