Shalom Life | November 26, 2014

Wife of New England Patriots Owner Passes Away

Myra Kraft, a key philanthropist, was active in the Jewish community

By: Sammy Hudes

Published: July 21st, 2011 in Culture » Society » News

Wife of New England Patriots Owner Passes Away

Myra Kraft, the wife of New England Patriots owner, Robert Kraft, has passed away. Myra, a prominent philanthropist, died Wednesday morning at the age of 68 after a battle with cancer, according to the NFL team’s statement on its website.

“Words cannot express the deep sorrow that we feel in learning of the passing of Myra Hiatt Kraft,” reads the statement. “We are all heartbroken. The global philanthropic community and the New England Patriots family have suffered a great loss.”

Myra Kraft devoted much of her time to assisting a plethora of charities during her lifetime. She managed the Robert and Myra Kraft Family Foundation, which was founded after her husband bought the football team in 1994, and was also president and director of the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation. The foundation has contributed millions of dollars to charities in both the United States and Israel.

Kraft consistently contributed to supporting the State of Israel. She donated millions of dollars to causes relating to Israeli issues and also helped the Israeli women’s football program to develop.

She was a board member of several Jewish organizations including the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC).

“Kraft was a senior member of the JDC Board of Directors, and for years chaired their Israel area committee, visiting Israel often and promoting new and innovative social programs for the well-being of Israelis,” JDC CEO, Steve Schwager told the Jerusalem Post.

“Over the past 12 years, Myra gave her love and support to the many thousands of people in Jerusalem and elsewhere in Israel who have been able to enjoy Kraft Family Stadium [in Jerusalem],” said American Football in Israel president, Steve Leibowitz.

“So many people in Israel and in Jewish communities around the world have benefited from her generous philanthropy. She was loved and gave love in return. She will be mourned for a long time, and she will remain in our hearts forever.”

As well, Kraft served as chairwoman of the Combined Jewish Philanthropies and was on the board of directors of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the Boys and Girls Clubs, Boston’s Jewish Federation, the American Repertory Theatre, United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Brandeis. In 2003, Boston Magazine named her one of the 20 most powerful women in Boston.

Kraft even had an impact on the Patriots, as she was partly responsible for ensuring that every Patriots player had a clause in their contracts that required them to take part in at least ten charitable events per year.

“To be honest, this was shocking news. I never saw it coming. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family,” said Patriots offensive tackle, Matt Light. “I know how much of an influence she had shaping that locker room and the type of guys we had in there. That came from her.”

New Orleans Saints fullback Heath Evans, who was with the Patriots from 2005 to 2008, put it simply.

“What made Myra Kraft special? Strong, but Tender-hearted. Proud, but Humble. Bold, but Soft-Spoken. Extremely blessed, but lived to be a Blessing.”

Kraft’s funeral will be held Friday morning at Temple Emmanuel in Newton Centre, Massachusetts.

Shalom, Cancun: A Jewish Culture Guide Shalom, Cancun: A Jewish Culture Guide TrendingSeth Rogen: James Franco is a "Weird Guy" [VIDEO] Seth Rogen: James Franco is a "Weird Guy" [VIDEO] TrendingDeaths of Joan Rivers, Robin Williams & Jennifer Lawrence Nude Photos Are Top Internet Search Items for 2014 Deaths of Joan Rivers, Robin Williams & Jennifer Lawrence Nude Photos Are Top Internet Search Items for 2014 Trending
 

The Essential Hanukkah Gift Guide 2014: The Unemployed Philosopher's Guild [GIVEAWAY]

November 26, 2014 | By Daniel Koren
The Essential Hanukkah Gift Guide 2014: The Unemployed Philosopher's Guild [GIVEAWAY]

See inside for your chance to win a "Jew's Glasses" 4-pack of either your favorite Jewish entertainers, thinkers, artists or writers

Read More

Even with Thanksgiving, Israelis Still Eat More Turkey Than Americans

November 26, 2014 | By JNS.org
Even with Thanksgiving, Israelis Still Eat More Turkey Than Americans

Israel is actually the world leader in per capita consumption of turkey

Read More

UJA Federation of Greater Toronto Approves Funding to Strengthen Israel’s Southern Region

November 26, 2014 | By ShalomLife Team
UJA Federation of Greater Toronto Approves Funding to Strengthen Israel’s Southern Region

A UJA committee was in the Holy Land last week, witnessing firsthand how funds donated by the Canadian Jewish community are being used

Read More

Jewish Hall of Fame: Billy Joel

November 26, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
Jewish Hall of Fame: Billy Joel

This week's inductee is the "Piano Man" himself

Read More

This British City Council is Banning All Israeli Goods

November 26, 2014 | By Daniel Koren
This British City Council is Banning All Israeli Goods

Leicester, the 10th largest city in the U.K., has opposed the Labor Party's recommendation not to join the BDS movement

Read More

Israeli Police Are Using Spy Balloons for A Better View of Jerusalem

November 26, 2014 | By Daniel Koren
Israeli Police Are Using Spy Balloons for A Better View of Jerusalem

Incorporated to keep the city safe after a wave of terrorist attacks

Read More

Mel Brooks Joins 'Hotel Transylvania 2' as Dracula's Dad

November 26, 2014 | By Sara Torvik
Mel Brooks Joins 'Hotel Transylvania 2' as Dracula's Dad

The legendary comedian will play Vlad, who brings drama with him on a family visit.

Read More

Lena Dunham Rocks Out to Hip Hop Song Named After Her [VIDEO]

November 26, 2014 | By Sara Torvik
Lena Dunham Rocks Out to Hip Hop Song Named After Her [VIDEO]

Hand Job Academy is back with a second music video after their first hit, 'Shark Week'.

Read More

More Headlines