John David Molson, owner of Montreal Canadiens in glory years, dies at 88

The Habs won five Stanley Cup titles with Molson, a prominent member of Montreal's brewery dynasty, at the helm from 1964 until 1972.

Habs won 5 Stanley Cup titles with prominent member of Molson brewery dynasty at the helm

The Montreal Canadiens won 5 Stanley Cups under Molson's ownership. (Twitter/CanadiensMTL)

A senior member of the Molson brewing family has died.

John David Molson was once the president and owner of the Montreal Canadiens hockey team.

He was at the helm during the team's heyday. The Habs won five Stanley Cup titles during Molson's time as president, from 1964 to 1972.

"We regret to announce the passing of former Canadiens president and owner John David Molson at age 88. Our condolences to the Molson family," the Montreal Canadiens tweeted Monday afternoon.

Molson, who was known as David, was born on June 1, 1928. He was the son of John Henry Molson and Florence Hazel Browne.

After studies in Montreal and Brussels, he began working for the family company in 1949, occupying various positions until he became vice-president in January 1964.

During the 1963-1964 hockey season, the then-head of the Canadiens, Senator Hartland Molson, asked his younger cousin to take over management of the hockey team.

Four years later, David Molson and his brother Peter acquired ownership of the Canadian Arena company from their older relatives.

The Canadian Arena Company built the Montreal Forum. From 1935, for several decades, the company owned the Montreal Canadiens club. The team was sold in 1972 to Edward and Peter Bronfman. 

David Molson married Claire Faulkner in 1955. They had two sons, John Henry and David Hugh, and one daughter, Catherine Elizabeth.

John David Molson was 88 years old.