Legendary Vikings trainer Fred Zamberletti dies at age 86

Zamberletti was the team trainer from 1961 through 2003.
Publish date:

Long-time Minnesota Vikings athletic trainer Fred Zamberletti died on Sunday morning at the age of 86 years old. 

Zamberletti's death was announced by his family on his CaringBridge page, calling it a "joyous and sad day." 

"Fred passed away peacefully this morning joining his most beloved Lord Jesus Christ and the many loved ones that have passed before him," the CaringBridge update says. 

Zamberletti, born in 1932 in Melcher, Iowa, served as the Vikings' trainer from 1961 through 2003 and was on the sideline for every game in franchise history until Dec. 24, 2011. 

Zamberletti's health had been deteriorating since he was admitted to a hospital for back pain on July 16, and again on Aug. 11. An MRI revealed that he had an infection called Osteomyelitis of the Spinal Bone, an infection that his family said caused him a "considerable amount of pain." 

Despite the pain, Zamberletti "gives us smiles and loves to hear stories about what's happening with the Vikings," his family wrote.  

Patrick Reusse of the Star Tribune visited Zamberletti at Methodist Hospital on Friday and penned a beautiful tribute, noting that Vikings legendary coach Bud Grant stopped by for a tearful visit with him, in addition to Zamberletti getting a phone call from Hall of Fame wide receiver Randy Moss. 

Follow Bring Me The Sports on Facebook for more Minnesota sports.

Next Up

police tape, crime scene

Man and woman, aged 55 and 62, found dead in their home

The St. Louis County Sheriff's Office is investigating.

Gov. Tim Walz

Walz: COVID-19 guidance for Christmas likely to be similar to Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving featured a ban on social gatherings with non-household members.


Mall of America is offering a virtual Santa experience this year

People can virtually tour Santa's Candy Cane Institute.

PD Shimmers 4

Annual guide to finding holiday lights displays in MN is released

More than 80 holiday displays are on this year's list.

duluth police department

Duluth police officer charged in September shooting

The officer, who is a five-year veteran, is charged with two felonies.

Screen Shot 2020-11-30 at 1.31.42 PM

Enbridge gets final approval to start construction on Line 3 replacement

The project has attracted criticism from environmental and tribal groups.

Kirk Cousins

Is it a 4-team race for the final NFC playoff spot?

The key for Minnesota likely requires winning on the road against two top NFC teams.


Nov. 30 COVID-19 update: Hospitalizations reach new high mark

There are fewer than 100 staffed ICU beds available in Minnesota.


Randy Moss pays tribute to Fred Zamberletti, Tom Brady ruins it

Brady is being ripped to shreds by people who think his response is classless.

Fred Cox

Vikings all-time leading scorer Fred Cox dies at 80

Cox is also the inventor of the NERF football.

Fred Zamberletti won't be at Vikings game for first time in 51-years

He's the iron man of NFL team doctors -- or any employee for that matter. Fred Zamberletti has attended every Vikings game in franchise history, but his streak of 1,049 straight games will come to end this week. The 79-year old hasn't felt well recently and didn't make the trip to Washington, according to a team source.

Screen Shot 2019-06-12 at 10.45.38 AM

Steve Jordan to be inducted into Vikings' Ring of Honor

The team surprised Jordan on Wednesday morning.

Vikings re-sign DT Fred Evans

League sources tell ProFootballTalk.com the Minnesota Vikings have re-signed defensive tackle Fred Evans. Evans is the second defensive lineman the Vikings have re-signed this week, the first being Letroy Guion. Evans has spent five seasons in Minnesota.

Radio play-by-play voice of the Vikings from 1991-2000 has died

Dan Rowe, the voice of the Vikings from 1991-2000, died Friday.