He had planned on racing a 10K on Sunday.
Danny Kassap, a Canadian distance running ace, has died at a Toronto hospital. Once a Congolese citizen, Kassap fled his native country for Canada during a competition in 2001.
The director of the Canada Running Series, Alan Brookes, confirmed Kassap’s passing in a blog post on Monday.
“We were shocked and greatly saddened this morning to receive the news that Danny Kassap passed away at Sunnybrook Hospital overnight,” he wrote. “It is so very sad and tragic, and a great loss to the Canadian running community — especially those of us in Toronto who were a close and intimate part of Danny’s ‘running family.’ “
Kassap was 28 years old. He had planned on running the Sporting Life Toronto 10K on Sunday, but withdrew because he was not feeling well. Thus far, no cause of death has been given.
Tragically, in 2008, Kassap experienced a near-death episode while competing in the Berlin Marathon. In that race, spectator Tracey Malyon-Knot had helped save a fallen Kassap in the first few kilometers. “He was literally dead when we rolled him over,” she recalls. “We realized he wasn’t breathing. He had no pulse.”
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