NHL player Erik Karlsson and his wife, Melinda, have lost their baby boy a month before his April due date. In a post to Instagram, Karlsson shared a message with his fans to thank everyone for the love and support during this difficult time and revealed that their baby, who was born on March 19, was named Axel Michael.
"At this extremely difficult time it's hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel," he wrote. "We feel very lucky to be Axel's parents. Even though he was stillborn, we know we will hold him again one day under different circumstances and the joy he gave us will be with us forever."
Karlsson and his wife first announced back in November that they were expecting with a photo of the pair focused on a sonogram photo of the baby and Karlsson's hat, which read "Dad." "The most exciting news we have ever received arrived earlier this year. Can't wait to meet you," Karlsson captioned the sweet Instagram photo. Then, in December, the couple shared a high-energy hockey-themed gender reveal and celebrated the news that they were having a son.
Since the tragic loss was made public, members of the NHL community have reached out to offer their condolences to the couple.
The entire LA Kings' organization is thinking of Erik Karlsson and his family during this time ❤️— LA Kings (@LAKings) March 20, 2018
Nos pensées sont avec la famille Karlsson ce soir suivant la tragique nouvelle. / Our thoughts are with the Karlsson family tonight following this tragic news. Please accept our heartfelt condolences during this difficult time.— Canadiens Montréal (@CanadiensMTL) March 21, 2018
Our thoughts and condolences are with Erik Karlsson and his family during this difficult time. https://t.co/vi6kP69Qyv— Anaheim Ducks (@AnaheimDucks) March 21, 2018
Today is a day to remember that there are way more important things in life and hockey is just a game!! Our condolences to @ErikKarlsson65 and his wife Melinda on their tragic loss!!— Marc Savard (@MSavvy91) March 20, 2018
The Savard Family