Former Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Roman Cechmanek passed away Sunday in his native Czechia. The team announced the news Sunday via X (formerly Twitter). He was 52 years old. No cause of death has been revealed, though the statement noted he passed “suddenly.”
An obituary from the International Ice Hockey Federation reported that suicide and foul play have been ruled out. Cechmanek was supposed to play hockey with friends on Sunday morning but apparently canceled because he wasn’t feeling well. He was discovered in his apartment by his son, Roman Jr.
"The Philadelphia Flyers are extremely saddened to hear of the passing of former goaltender Roman Cechmanek," Keith Jones, president of the team’s hockey operations, said in their statement. "A late-round draft pick, Cechmanek spent three seasons with the team from 2000 through 2003 where he was highly successful and made an instant impact to our club on the ice and in the locker room."
Per People, Cechmanek took the Flyers to three consecutive playoff appearances and helped them to earn two 100-point seasons, as well as an Atlantic Division title. As soon as fans heard of his passing, they flocked to a local arena in Vestin, where Cechmanek got his start in the 1990s. Makeshift memorials proliferated across the rink throughout Sunday and into Monday.
"His passing at too young of an age is heartbreaking to us all. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time," Jones concluded the Flyers’ statement.
Cechmanek is survived by his three children, Roman Jr., Katerina, and Jakub.