4 May 2012
Traps of the Day: RIP Dale Oen & Junior Seau
It was a tragic week in the sports section at Trapit. The sports world had lost two great athletes—a rising star swimmer, and a sure-fire NFL Hall of Fame linebacker.
At just the age of 26, world champion Norwegian swimmer Alexander Dale Oen collapsed and died this week with no conclusive known cause of death after an official autopsy was conducted. It is suspected that Oen likely passed away after suffering a heart attack when training for the 2012 Olympics Games at an altitude camp in Flagstaff, Arizona. Oen became a full-fledged national hero in Norway after winning the 100-meter breaststroke at the FINA World Championships just last year in Shanghai. Oen’s triumph seemed to momentarily lift the spirits of a rattled nation days after a mass murderer took the lives of 77 at an Utoya Island youth camp in Norway.
The other tragedy to sweep the web this week, future NFL Hall of Famer Junior Seau died after suffering a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest. At the age of 43, Seau managed to tally up 20 total seasons as a ferocious hard-hitting linebacker, setting a San Diego Charger record of 12-consecutive trips to the Pro Bowl. On top of that tremendous perennial streak, Seau was honored with six All-Pro awards, given out to the top player at his particular position.
Despite the sadness surrounding Seau’s sudden death, officials at Boston University hope to gain something positive out of a tragedy, requesting that Seau’s brain be donated to their lab to research the effects of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) on an athlete in his post-retirement years. This request comes after a former NFL safety Dave Duerson fatally shot himself in February of 2011, but not before requesting that his brain be donated and studied for CTE-like symptoms. Duerson, as well as ex-Philadelphia Eagle Andre Waters—who also committed sucide—were discovered to have CTE.
Two legendary athletes. Two generations. Two heart-wrenching exits from this world. Rest in peace.