Obit-Plager Hockey

FILE - In this Thursday, Feb 2, 2017 file photo, Former St. Louis Blues player Bob Plager waves to fans while speaking during a ceremony to retire his number before an NHL hockey game between the Blues and the Toronto Maple Leafs in St. Louis. Former St. Louis Blues defenseman Bob Plager was killed Wednesday, March 24, 2021 in a car crash in St. Louis. He was 78.(AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)

ST. LOUIS (AP) — The final report on the cause of death of former St. Louis Blues defenseman Bob Plager has confirmed that he died of a “cardiac event” before crashing his SUV in March.

St. Louis Medical Examiner Dr. Michael Graham revealed the final report Tuesday, confirming his preliminary findings from shortly after Plager's death, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. The cause of death was cardiac dysrhythmia and the manner of death was listed as natural.

Plager, 78, was alone in his SUV when the crash happened on Interstate 64 near downtown St. Louis.

Plager came to the Blues from the New York Rangers when the NHL expanded in 1967-68. He played 11 seasons for St. Louis — teaming for a stretch with brothers Barclay and Bill — and later worked for the organization in a variety of roles. He coached the Blues for 11 games in 1992.

The Ontario native scored 20 goals with 126 assists and 802 penalty minutes in 644 regular-season NHL games, and added two goals, 17 assists and 195 penalty minutes in 74 playoff games.

Plager's jersey number 5 was retired by the Blues in 2017.