Fran Crippen, a medal-winning open-water swimmer on the U.S. national team, died Saturday during a 10-kilometer World Cup race in Fujairah, United Arab Emirates. He was 26.
Several swimmers returned to the water to search for Crippen after he failed to finish the race. They were followed by a dive team. Crippen's body was found just before the last buoy on the triangular course, race organizers said, according to Los Angeles Times.
"While the causes of this death remain under investigation, FINA and the entire aquatic community address, in this moment of grief, their deepest and sincere condolences to his family, friends and to U.S. Aquatic Sports and the USA Swimming family," world governing body FINA stated.
The 26-year-old Crippen won a 10km bronze medal in last year's world championships in Rome and a 5km bronze this year in Canada.
Before switching to open water swimming in 2006, Crippen was an 800m freestyle swimmer who won two U.S. titles, The Next Reporter reports.