04/06/2015 10:06 EDT | Updated 06/06/2015 05:59 EDT

Montreal Canadiens' Elmer Lach to be memorialized at private service

There will be no public funeral service for Elmer Lach, the former Habs forward who died Saturday at the age of 97. 

At Lach's request, only a small ceremony will be held for close friends and family.

A native of Saskatchewan, Lach played 664 regular season games during his career, all with the Montreal Canadiens.

During his run between 1940 and 1954, he recorded 215 goals and 408 assists. 

He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1966 and his jersey number, 16, was retired by the Habs in 2009. 

Until his death, he was the oldest living hockey player who had played in the NHL.

He is survived by two of his daughter-in-laws and one of their sons. His wife, Lise Desjardins Morel, died in October. 

The family has requested any memorial donations be made to the Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation in Pointe-Claire.