Former Hamilton Tiger-Cats’ owner Michael DeGroote has passed away

Photo courtesy: McMaster University Health Sciences

Michael DeGroote, the Canadian entrepreneur who owned the Hamilton Tiger-Cats from 1974 to 1978, passed away on Sunday.

The Ticats expressed their condolences to DeGroote’s family via their Twitter account. He was in his late-80s.

DeGroote purchased Laidlaw Transport Ltd. in 1959 and oversaw decades of growth as the company expanded into a number of different industries. He sold his shares to Canadian Pacific Railway in 1988, though he stayed on as the organization’s director until his retirement in 1990.

The business mogul made a number of sizeable donations to postsecondary institutions in Ontario, including a $105 million donation to McMaster University in 2003. A number of programs and buildings on campus bear his name, including the Michael G. DeGroote Centre for Learning and Discovery and the DeGroote School of Business.

DeGroote was born in Belgium and immigrated to Ontario during his teenage years. He had reportedly been suffering from dementia for a number of years prior to his death.