The Blackhawks are mourning the passing of team owner Rocky Wirtz. The team released a statement announcing Wirtz’ “sudden passing” on Tuesday. He was 70. Wirtz took the team over in 2007 after the death of his father, and he oversaw three Stanley Cup titles during his tenure. His time as owner was marred by mishandled sexual assault allegations against former video coach Brad Aldrich in 2010. However, an independent investigation concluded that Wirtz wasn’t aware of the allegations. His son and team CEO Danny Wirtz is expected to take over ownership. Under Wirtz leadership, he brought home games to TV and a renewed pride for the Blackhawks began.
Governor Pritzker and Illinois First Lady MK offered condolences to the Wirtz family, saying in part Rocky “epitomized what it means to be an Illinoisan — always ready to lend a hand to a stranger.” Rocky’s “extraordinary legacy will carry on in the thousands of lives that he touched.”