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Myra Kraft passes after battle with cancer

Robert Kraft, Myra Kraft AP

Myra Hiatt Kraft, the wife of Patriots owner Robert Kraft, has passed away, according to numerous media reports.  Mrs. Kraft had been fighting cancer for an extended period of time.

The Patriots have issued the following statement on the situation:  “Words cannot express the deep sorrow that we feel in learning of the passing of Myra Hiatt Kraft.  Myra passed away early this morning after a courageous battle with cancer.  We are all heartbroken.  The global philanthropic community and the New England Patriots family have suffered a great loss.”

During her ordeal, many in the media knew of the situation, but the media respected the privacy of the Kraft family.  Even lately, when Mr. Kraft had been shuttling between the NFL labor talks and the hospital at which Mrs. Kraft was being treated, the media remained respectful of the situation, despite the possible temptation to applaud Mr. Kraft for making such a significant sacrifice for the game at a time when he was one of the only owners — if not the only owner — that the players truly trusted.

Born and raised in Worcester, Massachusetts, Mrs. Kraft graduated from the Bancroft School and received a B.A. from Brandeis University in 1964.  She established the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation in 1994, when the Krafts purchased the franchise.  She also served as a trustee of the Robert K. and Myra H. Kraft Foundation, which advances educational initiatives and other civic-minded causes.

Mrs. Kraft was involved in many other charitable causes, summarized at her biography page on The Boston Foundation’s website, where she served on the Board of Directors.  The photo accompanying this story was taken on October 26, 2010, after completion of a new playground at the Boys & Girls Club of Boston.  In 1995, Mrs. Kraft became the first female chair of the organization, performing the duties so well that the Boys & Girls Club amended its by-laws to to extend the term limit of four years.

Mrs. Kraft is survived by her husband and four sons, Jonathan, Daniel, Joshua, and David.

Our thoughts and prayers have been with and will remain with the Kraft family, the Patriots organization, and all of the persons whom Mrs. Kraft has touched during a life premised on the concept of giving to others.

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57 Responses to “Myra Kraft passes after battle with cancer”
  1. will12203 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:10 AM

    R.I.P.

  2. jnbnet says: Jul 20, 2011 10:10 AM

    What a bummer. The Kraft family was the best thing to happen to the Patriot orginazation, and for that matter, to the NFL. (at least to some degree) Best wishes to the Kraft family.

  3. easyeddie says: Jul 20, 2011 10:12 AM

    So sad. Quite a person she was from what I read. And Mr. Kraft as well.

  4. andrewfbrowne says: Jul 20, 2011 10:13 AM

    He has been with the team trying to end the lockout all the while his wife was terminal? Dedication with a capital D. Wow, what else can you say. Thoughts and Prayers to the Kraft family.

    To saddle up and still be able to do the job that was required of him and by all accounts be the voice of reason under those circumstances is powerful. God bless.

  5. unbreakable02215 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:13 AM

    Sad day for Patriots fans everywhere. She was a
    classy lady. My heart goes out to the family.

    Win a Lombardi for Myra !

  6. bpfpft says: Jul 20, 2011 10:14 AM

    I had the opportunity to meet her on one occassion and she was extremely nice to my family. Very special person and a very sad day indeed, condonlences to the Kraft family.

    Valiant battle with cancer, RIP Mrs. Kraft.

  7. ampats says: Jul 20, 2011 10:14 AM

    R.I.P. Myra Kraft.

    Thanks for all your contributions from Patriot Nation! She was a true Patriots fan!

  8. t16rich says: Jul 20, 2011 10:16 AM

    Sad news that impacts a great, classy owner. My thoughts to the Kraft family and Patriot organization. From my understanding she was a true fan and always willing to help.
    R.I.P. Mrs. Myra Kraft

  9. joetoronto says: Jul 20, 2011 10:17 AM

    Condolences to the family.

  10. Ralphie says: Jul 20, 2011 10:18 AM

    It’s easy to cast aspersions to some owners because of their wealth, but the Kraft family has raised and given away over $100million to charities over the many years they’ve been involved in a multitude of causes. Much of that families effort was driven by Myra Kraft. She leaves a great legacy.

  11. kate773 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:19 AM

    This is a woman who dedicated her life to giving back. She was a special woman. For anyone who thinks the Kraft family is a bunch of greedy owners, you only need to look at Myra Kraft.

    That Bob Kraft was able to work through the negotiations knowing his wife was going through this is truly remarkable. I don’t doubt for one second she inisted he do so.

    For once I commend the media for respecting his privacy during this time.

    My condolences to the Kraft family.

  12. renaissanceman87 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:21 AM

    No! She seemed like such a cute, nice lady. My condolences to the Kraft family.

  13. killxswitch says: Jul 20, 2011 10:21 AM

    I hate the Pats but Bob Kraft has always been an admirable owner. This is the first I’ve heard of Mrs. Myra Kraft or her struggle with cancer. Sounds like she lived a great life full of giving to others. Condolences to the Kraft family, RIP. I’m impressed Mr. Kraft was able to handle such league responsibility at such a time.

  14. lucky5934 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:22 AM

    It is never easy losing a loved one. Especially a spouse. My thoughts and prayers are with the Kraft family. I am glad she is no longer suffering.

  15. chowderhead12 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:22 AM

    my heart breaks for all of us patriot fans and Mr. kraft i feel for your loss. may god bless you and your family. RIP MRS KRAFT

  16. eaglesfan290 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:24 AM

    Anyone who has had a close relative battle cancer knows how hard a fight it is. Cancer is a battle that is fought not only by the person who gets the disease, but by his/her support network. It is physically and emotionally draining and my heart goes out to the Kraft family.

    I’m sorry to hear the Kraft family had to go through a lockout in the last 6 months Myra was alive. This is a time you should be with family 24/7 because you just don’t get that time back. It’s unfortunate that 2/10 named plaintiffs on the lawsuit were from the Patriots! I’m sure he was very torn on how to divide his time!

    Best wishes to the family.

  17. supermariojosh says: Jul 20, 2011 10:26 AM

    RIP Mrs. Kraft. Blessings on the Kraft family during this difficult time.

    Sincerely,
    A Packer fan

  18. grpatriot says: Jul 20, 2011 10:27 AM

    Robert Kraft and Family continued to spearhead the new CBA during this tremendous loss. Patriot Nation is stinging from this news!
    Our deepest sympathy and condolences to the Kraft Family. Myra will live forever in our thoughts and prayers…

  19. southpaw2k says: Jul 20, 2011 10:29 AM

    Not sure how Bob Kraft goes back to the negotiating table after suffering the loss of his wife. What a terrible loss for a classy woman. I didn’t know about their charity donations in the past, so now I respect them even more for their contributions.

    Will someone please cure cancer already?

  20. flakazoid says: Jul 20, 2011 10:30 AM

    From a Steeler fan, my condolences on your loss. And my thanks for all you’ve done for the league.

  21. gokafilm says: Jul 20, 2011 10:30 AM

    Just lost my brother to Gastric Cancer on July 2nd..I know the pain. R.I.P Myra. We’ve established a scholarship in my brother’s name…if any students would like to apply, visit http://www.luisetorresscholarshipfund.org

  22. virginiaiggle says: Jul 20, 2011 10:32 AM

    If memory serves me correctly, Ms. Kraft was also the person who made an early stand against questionable player conduct. When the Patriots drafted Christian Peter in the 90s(?), she had a serious problem with Peter’s off-field behaviors. I believe the Patriots eventually renounced their rights to Peter.

    Some may say she was meddling, but I applauded her then when she fought for what she believed in. My thoughts are with the Kraft family today in their time of sorrow.

  23. nxsteven says: Jul 20, 2011 10:32 AM

    RIP Mrs. Kraft. Condolences to the Kraft family.

    - A Jets fan

  24. jahbird says: Jul 20, 2011 10:33 AM

    For some, cancer is a word, for others it is a sentence. Regardless, this terrible disease has affected us all in some way, shape, or form. The truly blessed are those who survive their brush with death, and the truly brave are those who don’t.

    Today we are all Pats fans; the Krafts are America’s shining example of what sports franchise ownership should be and for their loss we all suffer. My condolences.

  25. blarch says: Jul 20, 2011 10:36 AM

    Very sad. A wonderful life she lived though. I will offer prayers in her memory.

  26. sean6886 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:39 AM

    Not a Pats fan at all (Jets fan), but rivalry goes away at times like this.
    Very sad for the Kraft Family. Never easy to lose one loved so much.

  27. Rhode Island Patriots Fan says: Jul 20, 2011 10:45 AM

    I extend my deepest sympathy to Bob Kraft and the Kraft family.

  28. rkjacobson says: Jul 20, 2011 10:49 AM

    Sincere thoughts and prayers to all those close to Mrs Kraft, especially the Kraft family, friends, and the Patriot organization during this difficult time.

    Best wishes!
    Vikings Fan

  29. deljzc says: Jul 20, 2011 10:57 AM

    My mother was just diagnosed with Grade 4 brain cancer and has been given a the dreaded “time to live” speech.

    I am impressed at Mr. Kraft’s ability to still give time to the NFL knowing his loved one and partner has a limited time remaining. I don’t know how he did it or how yet I am going to be able to balance my life moving forward.

    My condolences to the Kraft family and admiration at their courage and fortitude during such a difficult time over that past few months (or years).

    While I am no fan of the Patriots, having a loved one taken early by cancer is a horrific thing to deal with. My thoughts are with you.

  30. brian327 says: Jul 20, 2011 10:59 AM

    Saddened to hear of the passing of Mrs. Kraft. I hope she rests in peace.

    On a football note: I predict the Patriots become the first team to wear pink jerseys during breast cancer awareness month this year.

  31. jcd213 says: Jul 20, 2011 11:06 AM

    RIP

    AFC East

  32. richm2256 says: Jul 20, 2011 11:07 AM

    Had no idea she was fighting this battle ….. she – as much as Robert and Jonathon – was as responsible as anyone for changing the face of this organization, and while New England has had a few issues with player’s “character issues”, she is the reason there aren’t more widespread arrests of “problem” players in New England.

    She was widely known in New England for her charitable works, and support for what her husband and son were doing here with the Patriots, and in making the NFL a better organization; does anyone think this potential CBA doesn’t happen without Robert Kraft’s behind-the-scenes influence on both sides?

    That Bob Kraft was as dedicated to settling this labor dispute as he was, while his wife was fighting this battle, speaks volumes about the man’s dedication to NFL football itself.

    My heart goes out to the Kraft family, today.

  33. pantherfan89 says: Jul 20, 2011 11:07 AM

    Sincere condolences, just lost an uncle to pancreatic cancer. The loss is staggering. Best of luck and well wishes to the entire Kraft family.

    -A Panthers Fan

  34. holdthemayo123 says: Jul 20, 2011 11:08 AM

    I always loved when the cameras would pan to her and she would be engrossed in the game, usually with her binoculars out. Pats lost a true fan and we all lost a philanthropic person. RIP.

  35. CKL says: Jul 20, 2011 11:08 AM

    All I wanted to say is I feel for Mr Kraft and his family and I hate that she had to suffer this way. At times she was the voice in his ear on deals that made him think twice and that was a good thing.
    I respect that he had the will to continue to help get this CBA done at such a difficult time for him and his family without even disclosing a thing.

  36. rsox3fan says: Jul 20, 2011 11:20 AM

    Condolences indeed.the Kraft’s saved football here in New England.We will forever be grateful to that wonderful family, also it’s nice to see the entire NFL fan base coming together with their sympathies.

  37. RexCanCoach says: Jul 20, 2011 11:20 AM

    Rest in peace Myra. Football and rivalries aside, both Myra and Bob showed tremendous courage fighting the greatest threat to humanity ever. Condolences out to all of Patriot nation today.

  38. nineroutsider says: Jul 20, 2011 11:24 AM

    Cancer has clipped so many in my and my wife’s family…R.I.P. Mrs Kraft.

  39. bostfaninsfla says: Jul 20, 2011 11:32 AM

    R.I.P. Mrs. Kraft

  40. sdelmonte says: Jul 20, 2011 11:35 AM

    Just found this article from 2007 about Myra Kraft’s work as a philanthropist.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/18/world/americas/18iht-web.0318-giving.4944365.html?pagewanted=all

    Is it any wonder that Kraft is so respected in football, if he had a wife like this influencing him?

    My condolences to the Kraft family and their friends.

  41. lowleadman says: Jul 20, 2011 11:35 AM

    I am very saddened by this news. Myra was a person who dedicated her life to helping others.
    She will be sorely missed as a big part of the Patriots family as well as the people and the organizations that she supported. My condolences go to the rest of the Kraft family.

    Very sad indeed. Rest in peace Myra.

  42. idriveamoped says: Jul 20, 2011 11:50 AM

    Rest in Peace, and I wish the Kraft family a speedy recovering.

    Mr. Kraft, I must say you are a piece of Iron. There is no way I could think about being one of the active members in these negotiations if my wife was ill.

  43. nyjalleffingday says: Jul 20, 2011 11:51 AM

    Poor Mr. Kraft :(

  44. pacificamjr says: Jul 20, 2011 12:25 PM

    RIP Mrs. K.

    -Lions Fan

  45. cylondetector says: Jul 20, 2011 12:43 PM

    All you can ask is to contribute as much as possible in our limited time on this planet – I think Mrs K did just that.

    Special word of appreciation for all the fans of other teams keeping it classy and paying their respects.

  46. mobuccsfan says: Jul 20, 2011 12:47 PM

    Sounds like she was a wonderful person and makes me respect Mr. Kraft even more for being able to take on the negotiations as he has. I don’t think I could have done that. It sounds to me like they are both very good people, but I still don’t have to like the Patriots team. These people are amazing and by all accounts, do amazing things. The media should focus on the positives in our world today, a lot more and the world might just become a better place. The good thing is that she won’t have to suffer any more. Cancer is no joke and I too, hope that a cure may be found soon.
    My condolences to the Kraft Family and to the New England Patriots Organization.

    -A Buccaneers fan

  47. knucklebucket says: Jul 20, 2011 12:55 PM

    Rest in Peace Myra.
    Hats off to Robert Kraft and the media. Kraft has dealt with the lockout on the front lines while making time to visit his ailing wife in the hospital. The media let him do so privately while resisting the urge to write the heartfelt story before them.

    At least the suffering is over for Mrs Kraft.

  48. firemarshal1 says: Jul 20, 2011 1:06 PM

    Mr Kraft peace be with you and your family’s loss.

  49. pftwstbshmc says: Jul 20, 2011 1:16 PM

    Being a LONG time Pats fan I was very happy when the Kraft family took over and even more happy when I found out about Myra and all she has done for the community. Aslo as a Pats fan I want to thank all of you who are VERY classy fans of other teams and the sincere thoughts that you have put in writing here for this wonderful woman who did so much for so many.

    R.I.P Myra. You are going to be missed by many.

  50. rebdaddie says: Jul 20, 2011 1:16 PM

    Not a Pats fan, but my condolences to Mr. Kraft, his family and the Patriots family. How he was able to do all if has done in the past few months is amazing. His resliency should be applauded. The NFL should honor Mrs. Kraft and everybody else the NFL has lost to cancer this year at every NFL game this year they do for cancer awareness.

  51. castleanthrax says: Jul 20, 2011 1:35 PM

    Came on the site to check any status on the lockout and read this article.

    One word…Humbling.

    R.I.P. Myra, you’ve been an inspiration to many in this area.

    Condolences to the Kraft family. And those above who are posting they have similiar situations, my thoughts with your families as well.

    Cancer is an awful disease that someday hopefully will be wiped out.

  52. gdeli says: Jul 20, 2011 2:11 PM

    I sorry to the whole kraft family. It killed my mom , uncle,step sister before their time too. RIP

  53. roverboy1949 says: Jul 20, 2011 3:18 PM

    Deepest sympathy to the whole Kraft family for your loss. I’m sure the memories will always keep you with her, and her with you.

  54. projectshadow316 says: Jul 20, 2011 3:35 PM

    Read this on my Facebook page, then saw it on here. Such an unfortunate loss for Mr. Kraft, the Patriots, the NFL and everyone affected by her generosity. My thoughts are with the Kraft family. I hope the first home regular season game they dedicate it to her, and the Pats obliterate the poor saps lined up against them.

  55. Deb says: Jul 20, 2011 5:22 PM

    My deepest condolences to the Kraft family and the Patriots organization and fans for this terrible loss. May you be comforted by the memories of a woman who devoted herself to the service of others. God bless.

  56. rexryansfootsoldier says: Jul 20, 2011 6:05 PM

    RIP Myra. Thanks for doing all you did for us and our region.

    In many ways, with the Christian Peter incident, Myra just stood up for what she believed in. That players didn’t need to be scumbags and that you could field a team full of strong yet GOOD personalities. Thank you, Myra, for creating the Patriot Way. All of us Pats fans are indebted to you for that.

  57. bcgreg says: Jul 20, 2011 11:42 PM

    A big ‘thumbs down’ to all the heartless, witless fools who feel the need to hit ‘thumbs down’ on this story or any other similar stories on this sight. I cannot believe how sad it is that people feel the need to do that. It truly is disheartening how so many people act like this. It’s not cute. It’s not funny. It’s not enlightening. It’s flat out sad. Let’s see how many of you there are. Bunch of asshats.

    My condolences to the Krafts.

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