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NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told NESN.com on Wednesday that the Patriots' players are permitted to contact owner Robert Kraft to offer their condolences over the passing of his wife, Myra Kraft, who succumbed to her battle with cancer.
During the lockout, players are not allowed to contact team personnel unless given special permission, although the NFL does permit certain social encounters. For instance, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was able to attend quarterback Tony Romo's wedding earlier in the lockout.
"Momentum was quickly snatched away by New England, who once again proved that any Patriot, at any moment, can make a play." —Inside the NFL, Packers v. Patriots
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There was the day at training camp in Smithfield, R.I., when the Patriots trained at Bryant College, and Myra was walking through campus with all the 200- and 300-pound players, thinking "they all look so tough." Then she spotted [Troy] Brown, in a reflective moment, feeding some of the fish by the water.
Brown became one of her favorite players after that, and the connection with players grew stronger in the years to come.
. . .
Defensive lineman Vince Wilfork called her "momma" and a "wonderful woman."
. . .
Every Patriots player has a clause in their contract to take part in 10 charitable events per year, and the Patriots Charitable Foundation seemed to grow each year, helping more in need as times became more challenging.
Peter Gammons (former Boston Globe and ESPN reporter) -- "Be they hairdressers, friends, just folks, the people Myra touched, helped and educated their children is beyond calculation. ... One of the finest, most philanthropic, kind and civilized persons I have ever known."
"I'm truly heartbroken today. Myra Kraft has passed away. With my Brisk departure from #Boston, she is the one person that I regret not saying goodbye too. As a young player/man she was a gr8 example of how a woman stands beside, not behind, a man of power! I never got a chance to say thanks 4 that lasting impression. R.I.P. You will be missed."
"On behalf of the entire Patriots football operation, we mourn the passing of Myra Kraft. As much support as her quiet but unmistakable presence provided us in the competitive arena and as much as I personally will miss her warm embraces before and after each game, Myra shined brightest in a much broader arena. In the humanitarian arena, her generosity through philanthropy was admired and appreciated by all. She made a permanent impression on hundreds of coaches, players, staff and our families as a model of grace, strength and giving. Myra's vision and example will impact and remain very much with our team forever."
This is from Peter King, talking about Jonathan Kraft's eulogy:
At least 10 people who were at the Myra Kraft funeral service Friday said Jonathan Kraft -- son of Robert and Myra, president of the Patriots -- gave one of the most memorable eulogies they'd ever heard. How about this part of it.
On a trip to South Africa when apartheid still was the law of the land, Jonathan and his mom saw some blacks being arrested in Johannesburg for not having the proper documentation. Myra Kraft told a police officer: "I don't have the proper documentation. Arrest me too.'' She held out her hands to be handcuffed and demanded to be arrested. Jonathan, in college at the time, literally picked up his diminutive mother and took her away from the scene. "She was beating me on the back of the head,'' he said, wanting to be put down so she could go back.