American soccer journalist Grant Wahl died of a “slow-growing and undetected” ascending aortic aneurysm with hemopericardium, according to an autopsy by a New York City medical examiner, according to Wahl’s wife, Dr. Celine Gounder.
Wahl died while covering the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. She was 48 years old.
AMERICAN SOCCER JOURNALIST GRANT WAHL DIES WHILE COVERING THE FIFA WORLD CUP IN QATAR
“The New York City Medical Examiner’s Office did an autopsy on her here in New York, and it showed that she had an aortic aneurysm that ruptured,” Gounder told CBS News on Thursday.
Wahl “got sick” while covering the Argentina-Netherlands quarterfinal, a spokesman for Qatar’s World Cup planning committee told Fox News. After paramedics performed CPR for several minutes at the scene, he was taken to Hamad General Hospital.
“The chest pressure he experienced shortly before his death may have represented the initial symptoms,” Gounder wrote on Wahl’s website. “No amount of CPR or shocks would have saved him. His death was not related to COVID. His death was not related to vaccination status. There was nothing nefarious in his death.”
“I kept asking: did he have a pulse?” Gounder said. “If he had a pulse when he left the stadium, that would have been a good sign, but no one answered the question. So, to me, I was scared.”
THEMATIC STATEMENT BY QATARIS DETAILING THE CIRCUMSTANCES SURROUNDING THE DEATH OF US JOURNALIST GRANT WAHL
“It’s just one of these things that had probably been brewing for years, and for whatever reason it happened at this time,” Gounder added.
Wahl had been “laughing at a joke we saw on Twitter” minutes before he allegedly collapsed, said journalist Rafael Cores, who was sitting next to Wahl at the game. In the days before, Wahl had a case of bronchitis, he said on a podcast.
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“My body finally broke down. Three weeks of little sleep, high stress, and a lot of work can do that,” Wahl wrote on Dec. 5. “What had been a cold for the last 10 days turned into something else.” severely on the night of the game between the USA and the Netherlands, and I could feel my upper chest taking on a new level of pressure and discomfort.”
Wahl wrote that he tested negative for COVID-19 and sought treatment for his symptoms.
“Today I went to the medical clinic in the main media center and they told me I probably had bronchitis. They gave me a course of antibiotics and a strong cough syrup, and I already feel a little better in a few hours.” later. But still: Not good,” she wrote.
His brother, Eric Wahl, announced the death of his brother on Instagram and initially suggested that he might have been killed because he was previously wearing a rainbow-colored jersey in a game.
Eric Wahl retracted those accusations of foul play on Tuesday.
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“As soon as I heard about his death, my first thought was that he had been murdered,” said Eric Wahl. “I relied on things that G said the last two times I’ve spoken to him. But obviously I’m not sure about anything.”
Associated Press contributed to this report.