Baker University’s track and field and cross country coach has died. According to the school, 35-year-old Zach Kindler died late Monday night following a medical emergency.
Kindler, an Esbon, Kansas, native came to Baker University in 2008 after serving three year at Kansas Wesleyan University in Salina in the same position. Previous to Kansas Wesleyan, Kindler served as an assistant coach at Fort Hays State University.
As a student-athlete at FHSU Kindler achieved All-American status four times and Academic All-American status twice while bringing home a national title in the javelin for the Tigers. Kindler graduated with an undergraduate degree in sports management in 2001 and a master’s degree in sports administration in 2003.
During his time at Baker, coach Kindler was named Heart of America Athletic Conference Coach of the Year 15 times and won three cross country conference championships and nine track and field conference championships.
Kindler is survived by a wife, two daughters, and a son.
The school says the university community is “absolutely devastated” by Kindler’s death.
A GoFundMe account has been created to help support the Kindler family, which includes wife Sara and children Taylor, Carter and Tessa. In less that 24 hours the fundraiser called “Help for Zach Kindler’s Family” raised nearly $20,000. People can donate and share the fundraiser, while also leaving comments for the family.