BOSTON Myra Kraft, a noted philanthropist and the wife of New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, has died. She was 68.
“Words cannot express the deep sorrow that we feel in learning of the passing of Myra Hiatt Kraft,” the Patriots said in a statement Wednesday. “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.”
Myra Kraft served as president of the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation. She also served on the boards of several other charities.
“What she came to love about her family’s role as owners of the Patriots was making a difference in the lives of others,” said ESPNBoston’s Mike Reiss, who covers the Patriots.
The Kraft family kept Myra Kraft’s illness very private, but it came through at times during the ongoing NFL labor negotiations.
“Robert Kraft could not attend all of the meetings and part of that was that he was traveling back and forth from wherever the meetings were to be with Myra Kraft,” Reiss said.
Patriots past and present took to Twitter to express their condolences early Wednesday.
Defensive tackle Vince Wilfork called Myra Kraft “a wonderful woman who my wife and I loved dearly,” in a tweet.
“We have lost (one) of the greatest women I know (and) hands down the finest in all of sports (with) the passing of Mrs. Myra Kraft,” former Patriots fullback Heath Evans tweeted.