Grant Wahl collapsed during the Argentina-Netherlands quarterfinal match on Friday. (Photo courtesy of FOX Sports)
By Michael Lewis
The body of soccer writer Grant Wahl returned to the United States on Monday morning.
Wahl died last Friday while covering the World Cup in Qatar.
A State Department official said Wahl’s remains and his belongings arrived at JFK Airport at around 8:30 a.m. ET. They were accompanied by a consular official from the U.S. Embassy in Doha who had had custody of Wahl’s remains.
Wahl collapsed during Friday’s quarterfinal between Argentina and the Netherlands. He later passed away.
He was 48.
An autopsy is expected to be done on Wahl’s body in New York City.
Since Wahl died on Friday, tributes have been pouring in.
“I so appreciated Grant Wahl, whose writing captured not only the essence of the beautiful game but also the world around it,” U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken wrote on Twitter on Monday.
“I send my deepest condolences to his family, and thank our embassy team and Qatari partners who worked together so effectively to fulfill their wishes.”
“We can confirm that this morning, Grant Wahl’s remains and belongings were repatriated to the United States,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told a press conference.
Price said that the U.S. Embassy in Doha “has worked very closely with the family” of the journalist to “fulfill their wishes,” and added that members of the consular corps accompanied Wahl’s remains on the flight back to the USA.
At the request of Wahl’s family, his was delivered to a medical center in New York for an autopsy. Price said the body showed no signs of a violent death and assured that the collaboration with the Qatari authorities was “excellent”.
Eric Wahl, Grant’s brother, retracted his statement he made on on social networks on Friday that his sibling had received death threats and suggested he was murdered.