December 10, 2016

Lions mourn loss of Rick Klassen

The BC Lions are mourning the loss of one of their own as standout defensive lineman Rick Klassen passed away earlier today following a courageous battle with cancer.

Klassen WallThe BC native was a mainstay along a talented Lions defensive line for nine seasons (1981-87 and 89-90) appearing in 142 regular season games. He was a West Division All-Star in 1985 helping anchor a tough Lions defense that paved the way to a Grey Cup title that year, the club’s second overall and first since 1964.

His 66 sacks are in the top-10 in CFL history among interior linemen and his five sacks in two Grey Cup appearances put him in the top-five all-time as well. He was also named the Most Valuable Canadian in the 1983 Grey Cup. The SFU grad played for Saskatchewan in 1988 giving him a total of 160 career CFL games, but returned to the club for a two-year stint (1989-90) and later retired as a Lion.

Klassen, who was a member of the club’s 2003 Dream Team, was inducted onto the Lions’ Wall of Fame in 2012. He was 57.