The Montreal Canadiens mourn the passing of Ronald Caron
MONTREAL– It is with deep regret that the Montreal Canadiens organization learned of the passing of Mr. Ronald Caron, who died peacefully in Montreal in the night of January 10, 2012. The former NHL executive was 82.
Born on December 19, 1929 in Hull, Quebec, Mr. Caron enjoyed a 40-year career in the NHL including 26 with the Montreal Canadiens and over a decade as general manager with the St. Louis Blues. A graduate from the University of Ottawa where he majored in Arts and Philosophy, Ronald Caron began what would be a very successful career in hockey as a part time scout for the Montreal Junior Canadiens in 1959-60. In 1968-69, he became head scout for that team. The following season he was coach for the Montreal Voyageurs for 60 games and in 1970-71 he was named head coach and general manager of the Voyageurs. In 1973-74, Ronald Caron was named head scout with the Montreal Canadiens and would be made director of recruitment and player personnel in 1978-79. A tremendous hockey mind, he would be Sam Pollock’s right hand man for many years and etched his name on the Cup in 1971 and 1973 and again in 1976, 1977, 1978 and 1979 as assistant general manager.
In 1983, then owner of the St. Louis Blues, Harry Ornest, hired him as general manager of the Blues and Ronald Caron would hold the dual title of vice president and general manager until 1994. Caron, who was better known as “Prof” because of his background as a teacher, hired Jacques Demers as head coach in 1983 and Jacques Martin to take over behind the bench in 1986. Under his guidance, the Blues earned Norris Division titles in 1984-85 and again in 1986-87. One of Caron’s brightest moments at the helm of the team came in 1985-86, when the Blues took the Calgary Flames to a decisive 7th game Campbell Conference title game, barely missing their fourth trip to a Stanley Cup Final. In 1990-91, The Hockey News voted Ronald Caron Executive of the Year for his relentless efforts.
Throughout his stellar career, Ronald Caron was known as one of the brightest hockey minds in the NHL. His sports knowledge was second to none and he was amazing at evaluating talent.