When 26-year-old Norwegian world champion swimmer Alexander Dale Oen died at a swim training camp in Arizona, our swim world was stunned and devastated. Again, it was with great sadness to read the final report of his death posted by the Aftenposten website. He died from "Coronary artery disease, narrowing of the blood vessels in the heart muscle due to serious atherosclerosis". Also,the report mentioned that he "suffered small heart attacks a few months prior to his death. His complaints of shoulder discomfort was thought to be an injury was probably related to his heart disease."
My deepest and sincere sympathy to his family, friends, and fellow swimmers. I never knew Alexander but I feel the pain of his loss because my 34 year old brother died suddenly and unexpectedly of a heart attack,too. Robbie was the swim captain of Northeastern University in Boston (USA). Robbie was diagnosed with very high cholesterol levels and tryglycerides. Today, there is treatment that would have helped my brother and Alexander. Our swim community must bring an awareness of heart disease prevention and early treatment. Next year, the 3rd annual global swim event called "Swim for your Heart..Feb14" will help bring this awareness in our community on a local level. I'm asking swimmers worldwide to contact their local heart center or hospital and ask them to offer free blood pressures and cholesterol test to all swimmers from recreational to elite swimmers at poolside on February 14. A medical team can distribute literature on prevention. I'm inviting the country of Norway to participate as a tribute to Alexander. I hope you will join me in this global effort. Please visit the non-profit website for ideas on event planning http://swimforyourheartfeb14.com or contact patgallant.charette@gmail for further information. Thank you.