43-Year-Old Tennis Champ Collapses on Court and Dies

A 43-year-old Nevada man who was an avid tennis player died last week at the age of 43 while playing the game he loved. Ryan Vannah was playing mixed doubles at Red Rock Country Club in Las Vegas on Jan. 29 when he dropped to the court, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Efforts to revive him using CPR failed, despite doctors trying for 55 minutes. Although Vannah came from a family with a history of high blood pressure and he was taking drugs for it, his sister, Tami Vannah Kang, said he never appeared to have health problems. “He took impeccable care of his health. He was so fit. He lifted weights. He looked like a bodybuilder to me. He was huge. We did not see this coming,” she said. The Review-Journal said that after Vannah was brought to Summerlin Hospital, doctors believed he was on the wrong blood pressure drug. As of last week, no official cause of death was issued. Vannah was on the club’s teams in the 40-and-over and 18-and-over age groups last year when they won their second consecutive United States Tennis Association League championships, the Review-Journal reported. “He was a big, giant teddy bear,” his sister said. “It only took him a minute to befriend even his opponents.” Red Rock head pro Sean Hubbard said, “To see a friend go down like that, it’s definitely tough. For everyone in Las Vegas who played tennis with him, it was a really sad day.” Dan Michalski, a fellow tennis player, said Vannah “was a friend to anyone. The whole tennis community is really shaken by this.” He said 43-year-old’s death was “a tough pill to swallow. Especially when he was so vibrant and full of life, such an integral part of the community.” Vannah’s niece Payton Dunn posted on a memorial page for him, “Uncle Ryan, I love you so much! You were the best uncle I could ask for. You were so kind and loving. You were always there for me and supported me in everything. “I really hope I will see you again in the future because I really and truly don’t know what I’d do if I didn’t. I love you, Uncle Ryan!!” A memorial service for Vannah will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Las Vegas, according to the Review-Journal. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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