NAHL, Wings mourn the loss of former player Kraft
November 7, 2015
The North American Hockey League (NAHL) mourns the passing of former Aberdeen Wings forward Zach Kraft, who passed away earlier this week after battling brain cancer. Kraft was 22 years old.
He was born Sept. 8, 1993, in Grand Forks and moved to Fargo for his sophomore year of high school.
Kraft, was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme — an aggressive stage 4 brain cancer — in February 2014. The following spring, a hockey benefit was held in his honor in Fargo.
Kraft played in the NAHL for Aberdeen during the 2012-13 season, where he recorded 14 points in 52 games played.
The Wings released the following statement: The Aberdeen Wings organization was saddened by the news of the passing of former Wing Zach Kraft. Zach was a great player, teammate, friend and person! He will be missed by all. Wings for Life.
A Caring Bridge site for Kraft said he was living at home under hospice care.
Kraft, a 2012 North graduate, gained local notoriety playing for the Spartans. He was a key contributor on the Spartans squad that won the 2012 state title. North defeated Grafton-Park River 3-2 in double overtime in the championship game thanks to a goal scored by Kraft.
"Every year I came to the tournament dreaming that it would be me out there scoring the game-winning goal," Kraft said after the 2012 title game. "You know what? It came true."
After graduating from North, Kraft went on to play junior hockey. He made the Fargo Force preseason roster in 2012 before playing in Aberdeen. He also played for the Wisconsin Wilderness of the Superior International Junior Hockey League.