Hockey Central

Mario Lemieux... the person...

Mario Lemieux was born on October 5, 1965 in Montreal. His parents were Jean-Guy and Pierrette Lemieux. His father was a construction worker while his mother stayed at home to look after Mario and his two brothers, Alain and Richard. Alain played for St. Louis, Quebec, and Pittsburgh during six seasons in the NHL and runs a hockey school in Pittsburgh now. Richard works for the Molson Brewing Company in Montreal. Growing up, Mario would pretend to be his idol, Guy Lafleur, while practicing in his home. His father would fill the front hallway of the home with snow and pack it so the boys could practice. Mario met Nathalie Asselin in 1982 and the couple were married on June 26, 1993.
Mario and Nathalie have two daughters, Lauren and Stephanie, and one son, Austin. They expect a fourth child in August. Mario is a scratch golfer and that is his primary hobby. He hosts and appears at several charity golf outings throughout the year. Mario is also a very private person who cherishes quiet family life. It is very unlikely that you will see him sponsoring on TV or in print very often and plans to retire quietly with his wife, family, and golf clubs.

 

Mario Lemieux's attitude toward his wife, family and life in general may stem from his bout with many health problems. Mario has suffered from spinal stenosis, spondylolysis, arthritis, a rare infection, herniated disks, a broken hand, and cancer. In January of 1993, Mario discovered that he had Hodgkin's disease, a form of cancer that affects the lymphatic system. Lemieux began receiving a regular course of radiation treatments which pull the strength and energy from your body. On the day of his last treatment, he received a dose of radiation at 2:00pm and hopped on a plane to Philly for a game against the Flyers where he scored a goal and an assist. Mario returned from radiation therapy for cancer to take the Art Ross trophy with 160 points in only 60 games. Said Lemieux: "I thought about it even during radiation. I was determined to come back and regain the lead." Mario has struggled through incredible adversity, and combined with the incredible numbers and style of play, must place him at the top of the hockey world.