Alexander Dale Oen, Norway's Hero & FINA's World Champion


Alexander Dale Oen May 21, 1985 - April 30, 2012

Alexander Dale Oen, the Norwegian world 100m breaststroke champion and Olympic silver medallist, has died at the age of 26, in Flagstaff, Arizona, the swimmer's national federation has confirmed.

Dale Oen, the fastest man ever to race 100m breaststroke in a textile suit and the first Norwegian to win world and European titles, was in the midst of an altitude training camp in Flagstaff, Arizona.

A Norwegian Swimming Federation statement said that Dale Oen suffered cardiac arrest. Cardiac arrest, the most common cause of death in young athletes, "is a deadly heart rhythm disturbance and can be brought on by either a congenital defect or by an electrolyte imbalance in the blood", a medical expert told SwimNews.

This was, said the federation, the saddest day in the history of Norwegian swimming. Dale Oen was three weeks away from celebrating his 27th birthday.

Craig Lord has written a brilliant tribute to Alexander, a total of three articles posted at SwimNews at these links: