CFL Alumni Rick Sowieta Passes Away

August 26th, 2017

CFL Alumni  Rick Sowieta fought a courageous battle against cancer but succumbed to this insidious disease today. He played 10 years in the CFL with the Toronto Argonauts and the Ottawa Rough Riders.  Rick was a three time CFL Eastern All Star (1980, 1983, and 1985) playing linebacker.   Rick and his wife Jenny have made the decision to donate his brain to the Canadian Sports Concussion Project at Toronto Western Hospital. He was a proud Canadian and felt as a Canadian, his contribution to Canadian Concussion Research was very important as his legacy to Canadian Football and the community.

Obituary

In Memory of Rick Sowieta
January 16, 1954 – August 26, 2017

Of Ottawa passed away, Saturday, August 26, 2017 after a courageous battle with cancer. Rick is survived by his loving wife Jenny, daughters, Sara (Stephen) and Katie (Jason), grandchildren Tegan and Fiona, step-children Ryan and Kyra, his brother Joe, sister-in-law Bridget and niece Janice (Glen). Rick came to Canada with his parents and brother as a small boy from his birthplace in Belgium settling in the heart of Ottawa, the Glebe. Football quickly became a passion and it took him to Richmond, Virginia to play for the Spiders during his college years. Rick began his professional football career with the Toronto Argonauts for 2 years and then coming back to his childhood home playing as number 75 for the Ottawa Rough Riders for 8 seasons. He will be remembered as an aggressive and tough linebacker by both teammates and opponents. Rick’s passion expanded to food after his football career opening Rick’s Cantina for 15 years. He will always be remembered for his exceptional cooking skills and love of trying new and exciting dishes. Football stayed as an important aspect of his life coaching many high school and minor league teams in the community. His impact on the lives of youth in the community is everlasting and he encourages others to take the opportunity to coach a team. Rick remained a true fighter throughout his battle with pancreatic cancer. He became involved in raising awareness of this deadly disease and didn’t stop living a full life throughout his last few weeks. His influence on the community was evident when he received overwhelming support towards surgery in Germany earlier this year and we were all truly touched by that support. We would also like to express our sincere thanks for the exceptional care provided by the cancer Centre at the Ottawa General Hospital. The family will receive friends for visitation at Sunnyside Wesleyan Church, 58 Grosvenor Avenue at Sunnyside after 1 pm on Saturday, September 2, 2017, followed by a celebration of Rick`s life at 2 pm. A reception will follow at the Prescott on Preston Street, where we can raise a pint and toast Rick. In lieu of flowers, donations to Pancreatic Cancer Canada would be appreciated.

Memorial Service Information

Visitation
Saturday, September 02, 2017
1:00 pm
Sunnyside Wesleyan Church
58 Grosvenor Avenue
Ottawa, Ontario K1S 4S4
(613) 730-9411

Funeral Service
Saturday, September 02, 2017
2:00 pm
Sunnyside Wesleyan Church
58 Grosvenor Avenue
Ottawa, Ontario K1S 4S4

Photo courtesy of Scott Grant Photography

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