Hamilton Police said Emery was identified as the victim of the swimming accident Sunday morning. Staff sergeant Paul Evans said police received a call just after 6 a.m. that an adult swimmer did not surface and that the Niagara Police assisted in the recovery effort. Emery’s body was recovered Sunday afternoon.
Emery’s body was recovered just before 3 p.m. Sunday. Hamilton Police said a cause of death would be confirmed after a post-mortem.
“The Chicago Blackhawks organization was deeply saddened to hear of Ray Emery’s passing,” the team said in a statement Sunday. “We extend our heartfelt condolences to his family and friends. The Blackhawks will fondly remember Ray as a fierce competitor, a good teammate and a Stanley Cup champion.”
Nicknamed “Razor” for his aggressive style, Emery played parts of 11 seasons with the Blackhawks, Ottawa Senators, Philadelphia Flyers, and Anaheim Ducks from 2003-2015. He helped the Senators reach the Stanley Cup Final in 2007 and won it as a backup with the Blackhawks in 2013.
Emery played in 326 NHL regular-season and playoff games. He went 145-86-28 with a 2.70 goals-against average and 16 shutouts during his career.
During the 2013 season, Emery posted a 1.94 goals-against average in 21 games, helping the Hawks to a 21-0-3 start to the lockout-shortened season. He and Corey Crawford shared the Jennings Trophy as the team allowed the fewest goals in the NHL that season.
“I will always remember Ray as a good person first & foremost,” friend and former teammate Dan Carcillo wrote on Twitter. “I envied his demeanor. He had a contagious personality. People were drawn to him. … I will never forget his selflessness. Man this hurts. Rest easy Uncle Ray Ray.”
Emery battled avascular necrosis, the same serious hip ailment that ended two-sport star Bo Jackson’s career and came back to play.
“Ray had many highs and lows in his personal life and his career,” longtime agent J.P. Barry said. “He never let things that would derail most of us stop his forward momentum. He had a big heart and a fun loving personality. He was someone we all rooted for to succeed.”
Throughout his career, Emery dealt with off-ice problems, including an incident of road rage, assault of a trainer in Russia and behavior that led to him being sent home from Ottawa’s training camp.