Grant Wahl's Wife Reveals Cause of Death of Soccer Journalist

The cause of death of soccer journalist Grant Wahl has been revealed. Wahl's wife Dr. Celine Gounder said an autopsy was conducted by the New York City Medical Examiners' Office, and he died of an aneurysm in his heart. Wahl was covering the World Cup in Qatar at the time of his death. 

"Grant died from the rupture of a slowly growing, undetected ascending aortic aneurysm with hemopericardium," she wrote in her husband's Substack newsletter. "The chest pressure he experienced shortly before his death may have represented the initial symptoms. No amount of CPR or shocks would have saved him. His death was unrelated to COVID. His death was unrelated to vaccination status. There was nothing nefarious about his death."

Wahl, 49, was stricken during the World Cup match between Argentina and the Netherlands at Lusail Iconic Stadium. Emergency workers attended to him and treated him for 20 to 30 minutes before he was taken away on a stretcher. Wahl's body was transported to New York.

"This transition was handled with the utmost care and sensitivity," Gounder wrote. "This was an international matter that required coordination from multiple agencies domestically and internationally, and there was full cooperation from everyone involved. Our sincere gratitude to everyone involved in repatriating Grant, in particular the White House, the U.S. Department of State, FIFA, U.S. Soccer and American Airlines."  

Wahl worked for Sports Illustrated from 1996 to 2001 and covered mostly soccer and college basketball. He then launched his newsletter called Fútbol with Grant Wahl, and a podcast with Meadowlark Media. Wahl also worked for Fox Sports from 2012 to 2019 and joined CBS Sports in 2021 as an analyst and editorial consultant. He was also very supportive of his wife's work. 

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"Grant radiated pride about my professional life, which he supported with all of his being, as I did his," Gounder wrote. "But our lives together were about so much more than our work. What drew us together were shared values. Shaped by strong women like his mother Helen and the late New York Times war correspondent Gloria Emerson, Grant was a feminist, by which I mean a staunch advocate for equality, and not just on the basis of sex.

"We were also both deeply invested in one another's families. Grant knew when someone was in crisis and he needed to drop everything to be there for them—be that his family or mine. Grant and his brother Eric were the ballast to our family after my father passed away suddenly, just as I coordinated the care for Grant's parents in their last years of life.