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University of Minnesota Duluth football player Reed Ryan dies at 22 years old

Ryan Reed died from genetic heart condition, family says
Ryan Reed died from genetic heart condition, family says 00:21

DULUTH, Minn. — The University of Minnesota Duluth announced that football senior defensive lineman Reed Ryan died earlier this week.

According to the university, Ryan died at Essentia Health in Duluth on Tuesday. He was 22 years old. His family says he died of a genetic heart condition that no one knew about until he went into cardiac arrest one week earlier following a football team workout in the weight room.

UMD head football coach Curt Wiese says the university's staff and players are "devastated" by Ryan's death.

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"Reed aspired to be better every day at whatever task was at hand," Wiese said. "He helped bring out the best in others with his positive attitude, infectious smile, and genuine care for the people around him. We were fortunate to have Reed on our team, and he made our program, our department, and our community a better place in a short period of time. Reed will be greatly missed, but his legacy will live on forever. He was the epitome of a UMD Bulldog, and what we can all aspire to be. To his family, thank you for allowing us to be part of his inspiring young life. Reed was a Bulldog through and through."

Ryan is a native of Waunakee, Wisconsin and graduated from the town's high school in 2019. Before UMD, Ryan spent four seasons with the North Dakota State University football program.

Ryan recorded seven solo tackles and assisted in another in the past season with the UMD Bulldogs. He also earned one sack against Northern State on Sept. 9 and had a collegiate career-best three tackles against Minot State on Oct. 21. 

In addition to his football career, Ryan was enrolled in UMD Labovitz School of Business and Economics as a double major in Marketing and Professional Sales.

His obituary said he was "doing what he loved" and had "lived life to the fullest in his short years." His pursuits included running an online vintage store.

Ryan's celebration of life will be held on Friday at Blackhawk Church in Middleton, Wisconsin. His funeral will be held on Saturday morning at the same church. 

His family said in the obituary that people could honor him by "being kind." They donated several of his organs and said he would be part of an NCAA research study designed to prevent similar tragedies.

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