Authorities released an official cause of death after famed tracked star Cameron Burrell died Monday. The young athlete died of apparent suicide, according to medical reports. Burrell was just 26-years-old.
Medical reports indicate Burrell died in a parking garage in Houston. His cause of death was due to a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
The athlete was a 100-meter sprinter at the University of Houston. He was also the son of two former Olympic gold medalists. His mother, Michelle Finn-Burrell was a gold medalist in the 1992 Barcelona Games for sprinting. Burrell’s father, Leroy, has been a longtime track and field coach in Houston. Additionally, Burrell was the godson of sprinting phenom Carl Lewis.
“We are going through profound sorrow and ask that all of our friends, extended University of Houston family and the track and field community in the U.S. and abroad allow us to gather with our closest family and friends,” Leroy Burrell said.
“We are profoundly grief-stricken, and thank everyone for the outpouring of prayers and support. We will forward more information when it is available,” he said.
Burrell won the 100-meter dash in 2018 for the University of Houston. He was also a three-time member of the NCAA All-American team and a prominent sprinter in the 4×100 relay team.
The track star also beat his father’s school record when he ran the 100 meter in less than 10 seconds in 2017. With a will to outrun the best, Burrell was the 121st person to do so when he posted a time of 9.93 seconds, beating out his dad by .01 seconds.
Track Star Burrell Was Trying to Go Pro
Prior to his death, the late track star had been trying to bolster his performance in hopes of going pro. The young athlete participated in the USA Track and Field Grand Prix. Burrell made it into the 100-meter final, but finished in ninth place.
“I went through the same recruiting process that every recruit goes through in this country,” Cameron Burrell said. “They came to my house, I got phone calls from rival schools, I explored. But I knew the best thing that was going to happen for me was staying here [in Houston]. Not necessarily because I’d be comfortable, but because I know at the end of the day they have my best interests at heart.”
The young star wanted to attend Houston where his dad taught because of his father’s “resiliency”, Burrell said. Furthermore, Burrell said he could learn a lot from his father because he’d been through much adversity in his life.
Burrell is survived by his parents and two brothers. The family said arrangements for a funeral would be released soon.