Vito Rizzuto delayed cancer treatment: Source

Vito Rizzuto. (QMI Agency files)

Vito Rizzuto. (QMI Agency files)

Melanie Colleu. QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:08 PM ET

 MONTREAL — Mob boss Vito Rizzuto knew he was seriously ill but delayed cancer treatment to spend Christmas with his family, a source tells QMI Agency.

The decision proved deadly for the 67-year-old crime figure, who collapsed in his home last weekend and died on Monday.

Rizzuto was suffering from lung cancer and had begun chemotherapy, a source in the family told QMI Agency.

With Christmas approaching, the Mafia don had planned to resume treatments in January.

But his wife found him lying on the floor in their home in Laval, just north of Montreal, the source said.

He was immediately rushed to hospital and his condition had deteriorated by Sunday evening.

Rizzuto's health problems weren't new.

He had mentioned them publicly in 2006, when he was extradited to New York to stand trial for his involvement in the 1981 murders of three New York mobsters.