Jack Riley, the first general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins, died Wednesday. He was 97.
Riley became general manager in May 1966 prior to Pittsburgh's first season in the NHL. He served as GM until May of 1970 when he became team president. Riley had a second stint as GM from 1972-74. He was inducted into the Penguins Hall of Fame in 1999 and attended games up until a few years ago.
"As the Penguins approach our 50th anniversary season, we are humbled to know that the franchise was built on the shoulders of hardworking people like Jack," the Penguins said in a statement Thursday. "We send out condolences to his family and many friends, both in Pittsburgh and throughout the hockey community. Jack Riley will be missed."
Riley played nine seasons in the Eastern Hockey League, American Hockey League and United States Hockey League. He also spent seven seasons as coach in the EHL, AHL and USHL, between 1945 and 1961.