Lara van Ruijven from the Netherlands, one of the best long-distance skaters in the world, has died. Van Ruijven died only at the age of 27.
- What terrible news we have just received. This is a loss for the entire sports world, Dutch national team coach Jeroen Otter said in Aftonbladet’s news.
In long-distance skating, for example, Van Ruijven won five European Championship golds, one World Championship gold and an Olympic bronze at the 2018 Pyeongchang Games in a 3,000-meter distance.
The loss of a national teammate and competitor was naturally a tough piece for other skaters. For example, Sjinkie Knegt, a member of the Dutch national team, shared a picture of his deceased colleague on Instagram.
- For ten years, we traveled around the world together, sharing successes but also disappointments. You were always a happy and positive person in our group. I will never forget you. Rest in peace Lara, you are in our hearts forever, Knegt wrote.
As early as the first day of July, it was reported that van Ruijven had been hospitalized in France. The Dutch national team was camping in Font Romeu, in the Pyrenees.
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Van Ruijven only had time to be in training camp for a couple of days when he got sick. The Dutch Skating Federation said at the time that van Ruijven was suffering from an autoimmune disorder and the complications it caused. He was taken to Perpignan Hospital, where he underwent at least two surgeries.
Despite intensive care, van Reijven died at the hospital on Friday.