Canadian pole vault champion Shawn Barber has died at age 29.
Barber’s agent, Paul Doyle, told the Associated Press that he died on Wednesday at his home in Texas. A cause of death has not been confirmed but the AP reports that he had been experiencing health issues.
“More than just an incredible athlete, Shawn was such a good-hearted person that always put others ahead of himself,” Doyle told the publication on Thursday. “It’s tragic to lose such a good person at such a young age.”
His talent agency, Doyle Management Group, also confirmed his passing on Instagram in a heartfelt post that called him “a friend that will never be forgotten.”
His management then went on to list some of Barber’s accomplishments in the sport, including being a finalist at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.
“He is currently the Canadian record holder with his personal best of 6.00m and was the 2015 World Champion in the Pole Vault,” the post read. “Shawn was also an Olympic finalist at the 2016 Olympics in Rio De Janeiro. He will be greatly missed.”
Athletics Canada, the national sport governing body for track and field, also paid tribute to the late athlete on X, formerly known as Twitter.
“Our thoughts and prayers to the family and friends of Shawn Barber, Canadian Pole Vaulter – 2015 World Champion, Rio 2016 Olympian and Canadian Record Holder.”
Our thoughts and prayers to the family and friends of Shawn Barber, Canadian Pole Vaulter – 2015 World Champion, Rio 2016 Olympian and Canadian Record Holder. pic.twitter.com/Mn7DcVKgqy
— Athletics Canada (@AthleticsCanada) January 18, 2024
Per the AP, Shawn is survived by his father, mother Ann and brother David.