Walter Gretzky, father of NHL legend Wayne Gretzky, dies at 82
Walter Gretzky the father of Wayne Gretzky is acknowledged by the crowd as his image is shown on the scoreboard during a Toronto Maple Leafs game. Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Walter Gretzky, father of NHL legend Wayne Gretzky, dies at 82

NHL legend Wayne Gretzky announced late Thursday night that his father, Walter Gretzky, died after a battle with Parkinson's Disease. He was 82-years-old. 

Walter Gretzky played a significant role in Wayne's hockey career. He served as his son's personal coach growing up, helping him focus on anticipating the action and refining his shooting skills.

The 82-year-old was born in Ontario and was named to the Order of Canada in 2007 "for his contributions to minor hockey in Canada and for his dedication to helping a myriad of local, provincial and national charities."

Walter played junior and senior hockey growing up in Canada but never played at the pro level. 

Erin Walsh is a Boston sports fan through and through. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Bridgewater State University and currently is in pursuit of her Master's Degree in Journalism from Northeastern University. Follow her on Twitter @ewalsh90.

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