MONTREAL — Former Montreal Aloette defender Michael Souls died Wednesday after a 16-year battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a neurodegenerative disease known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease. He was only 54 years old.
This news was confirmed by the Alouettes, but it is not surprising that Soles himself publicly announced his illness in February 2013.
“Our thoughts are with his family and friends,” said Alouettes general manager Danny Maciosia, who ran Soles in Montreal. He was a great footballer and always saw Alouette as his second family. He fought to the end even though he was sick. He never gave up and was always smiling. This guy made an impact on my career, he’s been more than just a friend. “
Soles, who joined the Alouettes as a free agent in 1996 when the team joined the CFL, was instrumental in Rebirth.
During his four seasons in Montreal, Souls’ mandate included creating gaps for half-star Mike Pringle’s races and protecting quarterback Tracy Hamm, both of whom were inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame.
Soles was named to the CFL All-Star Team in his first season with the Birds, and at the same time won the Lew Hayman Award given to the best Canadian player in the Eastern Conference.
He is survived by his wife Catherine, sons Anthony and Matthew, as well as daughter Justin
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