Kazakhstan’s top figure skater, Olympic bronze medalist Denis Ten, has died in hospital, where he was admitted with severe knife wounds after a street fight. Passers-by found him bleeding in the streets of the country’s largest city, Almaty. According to reports, the 25-year-old athlete spotted two people stealing mirrors from his car and tried to stop them but was stabbed in the scuffle.
Now the city police and interior minister are looking for the attackers, while people are bringing candles and flowers to the site of the deadly attack.
The country’s authorities, the International Skating Union, the International Olympic Committee and prominent athletes, as well as social media users from all over the world, are mourning the loss and expressing their condolences.
The ISU is deeply saddened by the news from media in Kazakhstan announcing the passing of Figure Skater Denis Ten. Our heartfelt condolences go out to Denis' family, friends and fans across the world. pic.twitter.com/1w7Isb9HJC— ISU Figure Skating (@ISU_Figure) 19 июля 2018 г.
“Denis Ten was a great athlete and a great ambassador for his sport. A warm personality and a charming man. Such a tragedy to lose him at such a young age.” —IOC President Thomas Bach pic.twitter.com/YIZhBHy6Fi— Olympics (@Olympics) 19 июля 2018 г.
“Denis Ten was a very talented skater and a true ambassador for #FigureSkating. He inspired many children and adults around the world. I send my sincerest sympathies to Denis’ family and friends in this difficult and tragic moment.” commented ISU President Mr. Jan Dijkema pic.twitter.com/FdMVg5glJ8— ISU Figure Skating (@ISU_Figure) 19 июля 2018 г.
So sad to hear of Denis Ten's tragic passing. He was as kind as he was talented. It was an honour to share the ice with him. You will be greatly missed, Denis.— Scott Moir (@ScottMoir) 19 июля 2018 г.
My skating friend, @Tenis_Den, passed away today. He was so kind to everyone and a huge inspiration to me and so many other people. Murdered in the streets of Kazakhstan. Denis, thank you for showing us how to be a champion. Your time with us was way too short. Love you forever.— Adam Rippon (@Adaripp) 19 июля 2018 г.
At the peak of his career, Ten won an Olympic bronze medal in 2014, as well as the silver and bronze during the world championship in 2013 and 2015, respectively.