University of Ottawa football player, 25, dies 'shortly after' season opener

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Francis Perron, a defensive lineman at the University of Ottawa, died “shortly after” the school’s season opener against the University of Toronto over the weekend, officials said. He was 25. 

President and Vice-Chancellor Jacques Frémont issued a statement on Sunday confirming Perron’s passing a day earlier in Toronto. He did not reveal the circumstances surrounding his death. 

“It is with a very heavy heart that I bring you some very sad news. Over the weekend, Francis Perron, one of our Mechanical Engineering students and a defensive lineman in his fifth season with Gee-Gees football, died shortly after a game between uOttawa and the University of Toronto,” Frémont’s statement read

“A bright, passionate, and caring person, Francis poured himself into his craft as a player and his academic pursuit of becoming an engineer.”

Head coach Marcel Bellefeuille issued his own statement on Twitter, calling Perron “an outstanding person, teammate, player and veteran leader.”

“He was someone that loved and was loved, by everyone that is a part of our program. He will be missed!”

Perron joined the Gee-Gees football program in 2017 after playing football at Cégep de Sherbrooke in Quebec for two years. While at uOttawa, he was a multiple-time U SPORTS Academic All-Canadian. 

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