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Hurricane Irma claims popular track coach ...as Caribbean mourns passing of ‘Dag’ Samuels

BVI coach Xavier “Dag” Samuels

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The athletic family in the Caribbean is mourning the sudden and untimely passing of athletics coach Xavier ‘Dag” Samuels, who passed away on Wednesday. He was one of the reported ten lives that were lost during the passage of hurricane Irma through the Eastern Caribbean on Wednesday.

Unconfirmed reporters states that “Dag” fell from the roof of his house in the British Virgin Islands during the passage of the hurricane.

NACAC President Victor Lopez issued a statement yesterday which read: The NACAC Athletics Family and as NACAC President and Member of the IAAF Board, I wish to express my deepest condolences to the family of Coach Xavier ‘Dag’ Samuels of the British Virgin Islands (BVI), who passed during Hurricane Irma on the island of Tortola.

We are totally dismayed at the passing of ‘Dag’, who was not only a dear friend but was a mentor in advanced courses for the region.

Xavier “Dag” Samuels, a veteran track coach in the British Virgin Islands who most recently worked with Kyron McMaster, reportedly died as Hurricane Irma moved through the territory.”

Hurricane Irma carved a path of destruction through the eastern Caribbean claiming an estimated 10 lives.

The statement continued: “For the CAC programme, he was one of the most outstanding coaches for the first level courses. Such course was historic because it was the first official activity held at the Puerto Rico Olympic Committee after it was inaugurated by IOC President Juan Samaranch.

In conjunction with Rey O’Neal, he was one of the fathers of BVI Athletics.

He was one of our most outstanding coaches obtaining medals worldwide with his national athletes and has been standing out internationally for more than a decade. As an example, currently he was training Kyron McMaster, who has the world leading time in the 400m hurdles this year and was the winner of the Diamond League final.

He was a sincere individual, tireless worker, exceptional organiser, great coach and friend.”

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