DETROIT – The last surviving member of the original “Production Line” has died.
Ted Lindsay died while in hospice care in Oakland Township, Mich.
"Ted was a persistent, courageous and determined man both on and off the ice. He was a man of many firsts. We are comforted in knowing that the Ted Lindsay legacy will forever be a part of history and are so proud of the many lives he helped change for the better through his tireless humanitarian work. Arrangements will be announced when they are finalized," reads a statement from his family.
Lindsay was born in Renfrew, Ontario in 1925. After a successful run with the Oshawa Generals, he was invited to play for the Detroit Red Wings when he was 19-years-old in 1944.
Lindsay played left wing on what was called “the Production Line” alongside centre Sid Abel and right wing Gordie Howe, all members of the Hockey Hall of Fame. Abel died in 2000 due to heart failure and Howe died in 2016 at age 88.
After meeting several professional football and baseball players, Lindsay discovered the working conditions of other major sports were better, and with Montreal Canadiens star Doug Harvey, they organized the National Hockey League Player’s Association. In 1995, “Net Worth,” a movie was about the struggle for hockey player rights was released with “Outlander” and “A History of Violence’s” Aidan Devine playing Lindsay and Kevin Conway playing Howe.
Lindsay was transferred to Chicago to play for the Black Hawks in 1957 and retired in 1960. After a four year break, Abel convinced Lindsay to return to Detroit for one last season. It was the first season championship Detroit since his trade to Chicago.
Over the course of his 1,068 games, Lindsay scored 379 goals and had 472.
Lindsay became general manager of the Red Wings in 1977. In 1978, the Red Wings made the playoffs for the first time in nine years, and won a playoff series for the first time in 12 years.
Visitation for family members and friends will be from 2-7 p.m. Thursday, with a scripture service at 7 p.m.
Public visitation will be held Friday from 9:07 a.m. to 7:07 p.m. at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit.
The funeral mass for family members and close friends will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Rochester. Visitation at the church will begin at 9 a.m.
Memorial tributes can be sent to the Ted Lindsay Foundation at 1819 East Big Beaver Road in Troy, Michigan, 48083.