Hungarian national team player Gábor Ocskay died of heart attack on Wednesday morning. The 34 year-old player appeared in 187 national team games for Hungary. The death came a shock to the Hungarian ice hockey community as Ocskay had just won the Hungarian national championship with Alba Volan last Saturday, adding assist in the 4-0 title-game win.
“I am in shock as I am sure all of the people in Hungary,” said Hungarian national team coach Pat Cortina after hearing the news.
"As a Coach, I will remember him as the hardest worker that I ever had the great pleasure of being involved with. Gabor was model Team player, respected by all teamates and opponents for his total dedication to the game of Hockey and the passion he brought every time his skates touched the ice . He was the type of player every coach dreams of having on his team, a true leader,” Cortina said.
Ocskay was one of the most successful players in Hungary. Through his career he was named the Hungarian Player of the Year three times (1994, 1995, 2006) and named the Hungary’s Best Forward in 1994, 2006 and 2007.
He was very faithful to his club, Alba Volán as he never played for any other club throughout his career. Most recently, he was a member of the Hungarian national team which earned the return to the elite nations after 70 years by winning the Division I World Championship in Sapporo 2008.
In 2004 Ocskay was diagnosed with cardiac muscle disease but after four months rest he was allowed to play again. Since then, he was under constant medical examination, which showed no signs of trouble.