Andrew Carroll, who played in 106 games for the Idaho Steelheads in the 2012-13 and 2015-16 seasons, died Monday at the age of 32.
Carroll is the only person to serve as captain or assistant captain for four seasons at Minnesota-Duluth. His family told the Duluth News Tribune that Carroll died after an accidental fall at Chicago O’Hare International Airport.
Carroll scored 57 points (22 goals) in his time with Idaho, with whom he played his final pro season. He also played minor league hockey for eight other teams in the ECHL and AHL. He scored a career-best 30 goals for Charlotte of the ECHL in 2009-10.
Carroll was the first men’s hockey player to receive UMD’s Shjon Podein Community Service Award, which honors off-field contributions. He added the Bill Campbell Community Service Award in 2016 with the Steelheads for his volunteer work at youth hockey practices and in schools.
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“Simply put, Andrew Carroll is one of the best people I ever met,” Steelheads coach Neil Graham said in a statement. “We were teammates in Greenville and in Idaho and I coached him for two seasons, all experiences that I will cherish. There are enough Andrew stories and enough warm memories of his company to write a novel. He is truly a one-of-a-kind friend whom I will truly miss.”
A Twin Cities native, Carroll’s family said in a statement: “We are deeply saddened to share of the loss of Andrew, an amazing brother, son, uncle, nephew, cousin, teammate, mentor and friend who died tragically after a fall at the Chicago O’Hare Airport. We are deeply grieving but have the assurance that he is in the loving arms of Jesus because of his decision to accept Christ.
“At this difficult time, what also gives us comfort is that his life meant so much to so many people and he was able to give the gift of hope by donating his heart and organs so that others might have life.”
Said Steelheads President Eric Trapp: “Andrew was such a special person to so many in our organization. He accomplished so much on the ice, and yet our players and fans seem to have just as many memories of him away from the rink. He was a charitable man and a gallant leader, and he holds a special place in our hearts.”