Gerry Kraemer is a man to be admired. He always carries himself professionally, and is considered a “gentleman” of Ringette. His passion for the sport of Ringette and the Waterloo Wildfire NRL team is clear to see. He was one of the founding members of the NRL, and the architect of the Waterloo Wildfire NRL team, starting as the GM for Waterloo Wildfire in 2004, the same year as the startup of the NRL. He remained in this position until the fall of 2011 when he had to resign due to a life threatening bout with leukemia. From then, until this summer, Gerry has been the Wildfire Media & Community Relations Rep, Home Games Announcer and Anthem Singer. Gerry is pictured above in his jersey which was awarded to him by head Coach David Duncan, Bryanna Kelly, Shelagh Rouse, and Danielle Duncan at his retirement presentation prior to Waterloo’s game on Saturday vs Cambridge. In his humble thank you speech, he remarks “My 12-year experience with the NRL Wildfire has been one of the most fulfilling times of my life. I have indeed been fortunate to have shared this time with a long string of quality people who have contributed to the success of the team. My wife, Deb, and I have 3 wonderful daughters but this team has given me dozens more”.
Thanks to his past energies, commitment and countless volunteer hours, the current players are able to enjoy their passion for Ringette at the highest level offered – being a National extremely competitive Ringette League. It is also noteworthy to recognize the support, effort and contribution of the entire Kraemer family towards Waterloo Ringette and the NRL. Gerry’s daughter, Shelly, has played as a captain, and now is doing a fabulous job as the teams’ General Manager. His wife, Deb, was an assistant coach with the Wildfire in the team’s first three seasons. And not to be left out, Gerry’s son, David has been a tireless supporter of the team through shot-clocking, and supporting the team with his overall enthusiasm.
The entire Waterloo Wildfire team, past players and the Waterloo Executive will miss Gerry Kraemer! It truly is the end of an era.