By Conor Thompson
As life goes on there’s one thing that we can’t prevent, and that is getting older. It feels like yesterday I was watching my childhood heroes playing in their prime years here in Buffalo. From my earliest memories of seeing the Dominator play, then seeing Miroslav Satan play and so on. When I see current Sabres now, I don’t look at them like I used to. When you’re 25 you look at these players as regular guys who have the best job in the world. But the key part I mentioned is just regular guys.
But if you ask me about Hasek, Satan, Afinogenov, even at 25 I still think of them as heroes. Why is that? Perhaps because some of my fondest memories are watching them play at a young age and at 25 I still think of those players as if I was 9. For the ones who are older than me, I believe that’s how you looked at Rene Robert. Witnessing him make magic on the ice alongside the other members of the French Connection.
Born in Trios-Rivieres in Quebec, Rene went on to enjoy 12 seasons in the NHL. As he spent time in Buffalo he fell in love with the community as many Sabres and Bills come to do. Robert would frequently make trips to Buffalo for charity events, Sabres games or even to just come enjoy the city of neighbors. Robert even had his driveway constructed of old pieces from the Aud. As we all know Rene passed a few days ago from a heart attack. It was a sad day for the hockey community, the Buffalo community and especially for Rene's family. When we enter KeyBank Center next year it’s going to feel a little odd at first looking up into the rafters knowing only one member of the French Connection is still with us.
Thankfully Rene left a lasting impact in the Buffalo community and in Sabres fans memories. What was your favorite Rene Robert moment? Could be a goal on the ice or seeing him at a charity event, feel free to let us know in the comments.