BMX Legend and X Games Star Dave Mirra Dies at 41 in Apparent Suicide
RIP Dave Mirra.
The BMX pro and X Games star has been found dead at 41 in an apparent suicide.
Mirra, who once held the record for the most X Games medals, and participated in every X Games from 1995 to 2008, was found dead inside his car in Greenville, North Carolina, on Thursday (Feb. 4).
Update — Feb. 5, 9:55 am ET:
TMZ reports that Mirra may have suffered from CTE, a progressive degenerative disease found in people who have suffered repetitive brain trauma (which also affects many ex-NFL players), and it may have been a factor in his suicide.
Police chief Mark Holtzman says investigators have spoken with a group of Mirra’s friends — who Mirra was with minutes before the suicide — and they said Dave didn’t appear suicidal.
However, he had been showing signs of depression in the past, Holtzman says.
TMZ was the first to report that Mirra was found inside his truck with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was in the area visiting with friends, and leaves behind a wife and two kids.
Mirra, who was also the former host of MTV’ Real World/Road Rules Challenge for two seasons, posted a photo of him and his wife on his Instagram account just before his death, captioned “My rock! Thank god”:
The Greenville, NC police department confirmed his death on their Facebook page:
At approximately 4pm today, Greenville Police responded to the 200 block of Pinewood Road for an apparent suicide. Upon arrival, officers discovered Dave Mirra, 41, of Greenville, sitting in a truck with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. He had been visiting friends in the area a short time before the incident.
Considered an icon in the pro-BMX world, Mirra, was instrumental in bringing the sport to the City of Greenville, which now is home to more than 20 professional BMX riders. The record-holding athlete is survived by his wife and two children.
“We mourn the loss today of a great friend and wonderful human being who touched the lives of so many around the world with his gift. He called Greenville, North Carolina home and was as humble a guy talking with kids on a street corner about bikes as he was in his element on the world stage. A young life with so much to offer was taken too soon,” said City of Greenville Mayor, Allen Thomas.
The Greenville Police Department will be handling the death investigation. The family of Dave Mirra would appreciate privacy during this very difficult time. If you or a loved one are struggling with suicidal thoughts, you are encouraged to seek help through the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by calling 1-800-273-TALK.
Dream Big! A photo posted by Dave Mirra (@davemirra) on
Mirra won a total of 24 medals at the X Games, including 14 gold medals. His friends like Carey Hart and Tony Hawk have taken to social media to mourn the loss:
I’m in complete shock. Angry, heart broken and just sad at the passing of my friend Dave. Heart broken 4 his daughters and wife. #DaveMirra
— Carey Hart (@hartluck) February 5, 2016
Goodbye Dave Mirra, a true pioneer, icon and legend. Thank you for the memories… we are heartbroken. pic.twitter.com/RHpTe7Qzwi
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) February 5, 2016
— Jimmie Johnson (@JimmieJohnson) February 5, 2016
RIP Dave Mirra… Damn
— Miles Teller (@Miles_Teller) February 5, 2016