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Former Sens VP Jeff Kyle, instrumental in bringing team to Ottawa, dies at 62

Many in Ottawa are mourning the loss of community builder and business leader Jeff Kyle, who played an instrumental part in bringing the Ottawa Senators to the capital.

Kyle passed away after a lengthy battle with cancer, the team announced Saturday.

Originally from Brockville, Ont. Kyle came to the capital with big dreams. He was part of a team of local business leaders who spearheaded the successful bid to bring NHL hockey back to Ottawa in 1990.

Kyle remained with the Ottawa Senators for over 20 years, building a brand that is now integral to the city.

The team’s former vice-president of marketing battled glioblastoma – the same brain cancer that took the life of Canadian singer-songwriter Gord Downie of the Tragically Hip.

Last November, Kyle was honoured by the Ottawa Senators during Hockey Fights Cancer Night.

“I remember Jeff as a young man when he first came to work for us. He was handsome, good looking, skilled but above all, he and a good heart,” said Ottawa Senators founder Bruce Firestone on Saturday.

Diagnosed in January 2023, Kyle had been undergoing treatment and surgery. He was told he had 12 to 18 months to live, but was determined to do whatever he could to stay active and healthy.

“Both as a husband, father and as a friend, he saved my life. He’s going to be missed by me and many others. He brought small town values to the team and to the community,” Firestone said.

Kyle was 62 years old.

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