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43-y/o tennis player suddenly dies during tiebreaker match

Ambulance (Dreamstime/TNS)
February 09, 2023

A 43-year-old longtime tennis player recently died after suddenly collapsing during a tiebreaker match at a Las Vegas, Nevada country club.

Ryan Vannah dropped to one knee and laid down on the court during a mixed doubles match at Red Rock Country Club last month, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. Nearby doctors rushed to perform CPR, but 55 minutes of medical attention failed to restart his heart, according to the outlet.

He died later that day – Jan. 29, according to his obituary – at Summerlin Hospital and Medical Center, just north of the country club. An official cause of death had not been determined as of the Review-Journal’s report, last updated Feb. 1. 

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Vannah had a family history of high blood pressure and was taking medication to manage it, the Review-Journal reported. The outlet said hospital staff believed he was taking the wrong medication for his blood pressure.

But his sister, Tami Vannah Kang, said, “We did not see this coming.”

“He took impeccable care of his health,” she said. “He was so fit. He lifted weights. He looked like a bodybuilder to me. He was huge.”

Vannah came from a family of attorneys and doctors but pursued tennis full-time after having competed in state championships in high school, the Review-Journal reported. He also taught at local elementary schools and strung other players’ tennis rackets for extra money, his sister said.

Fellow tennis player Dan Michalski told the Review-Journal, “The whole tennis community is really shaken by this,” adding that Vannah was “so vibrant and full of life, such an integral part of the community.”

“To see a friend go down like that, it’s definitely tough,” said the country club’s tennis director, Sean Hubbard. “For everyone in Las Vegas who played tennis with him, it was a really sad day.”