Doug Flutie's parents suffer heart attacks, die an hour apart

CFL great Doug Flutie says his mother, Joan, died of a broken heart just an hour after his father, Dick, passed away.

CFL great and football legend says his mother died of a broken heart after father passed away

Dick and Joan Flutie, parents of former professional football players Doug and Darren Flutie, died of heart attacks just one hour apart. (Doug Flutie)

CFL legend Doug Flutie revealed on social media the sudden and shocking heart attack deaths of both his mother and father.

The former quarterback said his father, Dick, died first Wednesday while in hospital where he was being treated for a long illness, and that his mother, Joan, suffered a sudden heart attack about an hour later. They had been married for 56 years.

"They say you can die of a broken heart, and I believe it," wrote Flutie on his Facebook page.

Doug Flutie was named the all-time best player in CFL history. (Steven Senne/Associated Press)

"My parents were always there for their children, from the days my dad coached us as kids and my mom would work the concession stands, through to this morning. The most important part of their 56 years of marriage was providing opportunities to their children."

In his eight-year CFL career, Flutie won three Grey Cup titles, was named the league's Most Outstanding Player six times and in 2006 was named the best player in CFL history.

Flutie played for the B.C. Lions in 1990 and '91, the Calgary Stampeders from 1992 to 1995 and the Toronto Argonauts in 1996 and 1997. 

The Boston native also played 12 years in the NFL, and won the 1984 Heisman Trophy as the top college player in the U.S. The 53-year-old works as a football broadcaster for NBC.

Brother Darren Flutie, a wide receiver, also had an illustrious 12-year career in the CFL, winning two Grey Cup titles.

Darren played for B.C. from 1991 to 1995, the Edmonton Eskimos in 1996 and 1997 and the Hamilton Tiger Cats from 1998 to 2002. He was a three-time CFL all-star.