American jet ski world champion Eric Francis was found dead off the coast of Guadeloupe after disappearing during a race in the Caribbean on Saturday. The 36-year-old earned the nickname “Eric the Eagle” for his success in the sport.
Daily Mail reports that a search party located Francis’ body floating beside his Kawasaki jet ski following his disappearance. The watercraft did not sustain any damage, per the report.
An investigation is ongoing.
Francis, from West Palm Beach, Florida, was participating in the Marie-Galante jet ski race when he went missing. His wife, Sophie, and two-year-old daughter attended the event to show support. Daily Mail reports that Francis and his wife were expecting their second child in the coming weeks.
Sophie is also a world-champion jet skier from the United Kingdom.
“All of us are heartsick to learn of the passing of world champion racer, Eric ‘The Eagle’ Francis while competing in Guadeloupe this weekend.” The Watercraft Journal said. “Eric was one of the hardest-charging racers today, a loving husband to Sophie and a dedicated father, as well as a good friend to so, so many in our sport. Godspeed, Eric.”
A GoFundMe page has been created to support Sophie and the Francis family. The page already exceeds $15,000 in donations.
Eric Francis’ Death Is a Mystery
An investigation into the death of American jet skier Eric Francis is still ongoing. It’s unclear what might’ve been responsible for the accident and very little information has been provided on the situation.
Per the Daily Mail, conditions for the Marie-Galante jet ski race were listed as “moderate.” Francis’ Kawasaki jet ski did not sustain any damage. The model, a Kawasaki Ultra 310X jet ski, can reach a top speed of 67 miles per hour.
It’s also unclear how Francis “disappeared” from the event on Saturday.