Olympian David Torrence Passes Away At Age 31

Olympian David Torrence Passes Away At Age 31

Olympian David Torrence was found dead at the bottom of a pool in Scottsdale, Arizona, on Monday, August 28, 2017.

Aug 29, 2017 by Johanna Gretschel
Olympian David Torrence Passes Away At Age 31
David Torrence, who never ceased to inspire the running community with his athleticism, enthusiasm, and compassion, was found dead today at the bottom of a swimming pool in Scottsdale, Arizona, at 7:30 AM. According to a local news affiliate, there were no obvious signs of foul play, and his death remains under investigation. He was 31 years old.

Read: "We Will Cheer For You, DT": A Tribute To David Torrence, The Fearless Leader

A native of California, Torrence won a silver medal in the 5K for the United States at the 2015 Pan-American Games. He switched his nationality to Peru for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, where he placed 15th in the 5K and set a Peruvian national record of 13:23.20. At the IAAF World Championships in London earlier this summer, Torrence set two more Peruvian national records this year: 1:47.01 for 800m and 3:34.67 for 1500m.

In 2014, Torrence set the American indoor record for 1K in running 2:16.76 in Boston. No American has ever run faster indoors. 

From 2009 through 2011, he was the reigning USATF Road Mile champion, but many already knew him best from another road mile he documented during his time as a Cal-Berkley student-athlete: the internet-famous, sub-four downhill mile.

Watch David Torrence run a downhill mile in 3:46.30 on Bancroft Way in Berkley, California:

Watch David Torrence's emotional celebration after winning his first of three consecutive USATF Road Mile titles:

Torrence was also a champion of the anti-doping cause, and contributed to an IAAF investigation that led to the eventual arrest of famed distance coach Jama Aden for the possession of PEDs in 2016.

Known for his versatility on the track, Torrence ran impressive marks from 800m through 5K -- in fact, only six men in the world have ever recorded better PRs in that range:

Athlete Country 800m 1500m 5000m
Augustine Choge KEN 1:44.86 3:29.47 12:53.66
Saïd Aouita MAR 1:43.86 3:29.46 12:58.39
Noureddine Morceli ALG 1:44.79 3:27.37 13:03.85
Vénuste Niyongabo BDI 1:45.13 3:29.18 13:03.29
Rashid Ramzi BRN 1:44.05 3:29.14 13:10.72
Alan Webb USA 1:43.84 3:30.54 13:10.86
David Torrence PER 1:45.14 3:33.23 13:16.53
Our sincerest condolences go out to Torrence's friends, family, and teammates. A friend of FloTrack, Torrence was by far one of the kindest athletes our staff had the honor of working with over the years. We will follow up with more in tribute this week. He is already sorely missed.

​Watch David Torrence break the American indoor record for 1K:

​David Torrence reacts after a breakout win as an unsponsored pro at the 2009 Puma Mile: