Daundre Barnaby races in the 400-metre sprint at the London Olympics in 2012.
Born: December 9, 1990 (St. Ann, Jamaica)
Died: March 27, 2015 (St. Kitts and Nevis)
Daundre Barnaby, a Canadian champion sprinter who competed at the 2012 Olympics, has died in St. Kitts and Nevis while training. He was 24.
“This is such a sad and profound loss,” said Rob Guy, chief executive officer of Athletics Canada. “Daundre was an outstanding athlete and an even better young man.”
The national team’s East Hub was holding a training camp on the Caribbean island of Saint Kitts. Athletics Canada announced a grief counsellor had been dispatched to join the team on the island, while head coach Peter Eriksson was also heading south to be with the team.
Born in Jamaica, Barnaby grew up in the Toronto suburb of Brampton and in Hartford, Conn., where he attended high school. He won a Southeastern Conference (SEC) championship in the 4×400-metre relay with the Mississippi State Bulldogs in 2011. The team’s performance earned him 2011 All SEC and All American honours.
The 6-foot-2, 165-pound sprinter won the 400m dash at the Canadian Olympic trials at Foothills Athletic Park in Calgary with a time of 46 seconds flat. A dual citizen, he needed only to receive his Canadian passport to qualify for the Olympic team. With the necessary document at last in hand, he headed to London to take part in the Opening Ceremonies of the 2012 Olympic Games.
Barnaby finished sixth in his heat with a time of 46.04 and was eliminated.
His personal best in his specialty was 45.47, which he achieved in a meet at Greensboro, N.C., on May 23, 2013.
Barnaby finished third in the 400m at the 2014 Harry Jerome Track Classic in Vancouver with a time of 45.55.
The sprinter competed at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and was expected to be a competitor at the Pan American Games in Toronto later this year.
“My parents raised me to never give up on anything,” he told the Hartford Courant newspaper after qualifying for the Olympics. “We didn’t have a lot but they taught me anything in life I can get, but I have to work for it.”