Olympic Hopeful J.J. Rice Lifeless at 18 in Diving Accident

The athletic neighborhood is mourning a tragic passing. 

Jackson James “J.J.” Rice, a US-born kitefoiler who competed professionally for Tonga has died in a diving accident off the coast of Tonga, his father Darren Rice confirmed to native outlet Matangi Tonga On-line. He was 18 years outdated. 

J.J. was free diving from a ship on June 15 when he died from a suspected shallow water blackout, his father informed the outlet. His physique was reportedly discovered on the seafloor beneath the boat by different divers and makes an attempt to resuscitate him failed. 

Born in the US, J.J. grew up in Ha’apai, a bunch of islands in Tonga the place his father and mom Nina Rice personal the Matafonua Island Lodge. As a Tongan citizen, J.J. represented the nation in kite foiling at worldwide occasions through the years, and had been hoping to make his Olympic debut representing Tonga on the 2024 Paris Video games.

Following his passing, J.J.’s sister Lily Rice shared a number of phrases about her brother on social media.

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