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Andrew Simpson died of ‘blunt trauma with drowning’, examiner found
12:38pm Wednesday 16th October 2013 in News
SAILING champion Andrew Simpson suffered head and neck injuries and drowned after being trapped underwater, a medical report has found.
The Olympic gold medallist died during an accident in training for the America’s Cup in San Francisco Bay in May.
An autopsy report from the San Francisco medical examiner listed the cause of Mr Simpson’s death as ‘blunt trauma with drowning’.
Father of two Mr Simpson, 36, of Sherborne, was serving as team strategist on Sweden's Artemis Racing team when the accident happened on May 9.
The report said that the manner of Mr Simpson’s death was an ‘accident’.
Chief medical examiner Amy Hart found serious cuts and bruises to Mr Simpson’s head and neck.
He also had injuries on his body and his arms and legs. He had no drugs or alcohol in his system, just caffeine.
Ms Hart, who carried out her examination the day after the accident, also inspected Mr Simpson’s helmet.
She stated: “The firm, thick gray foam material was in the shape of a helmet but the body of the foam was irregularly separated consistent with being crushed.”
Mr Simpson, who was nicknamed Bart, was trapped underwater for about 10 minutes after the accident. He was pronounced dead despite several attempts to revive him.
The report does not speculate on whether Mr Simpson was conscious when he went under the water.
The report has emerged through the San Francisco Chronicle, which also says that a San Francisco police investigation into the death remains open because investigators still must examine the autopsy report.
Fellow Olympians including Sir Ben Ainslie and team mate Iain Percy were among the hundreds who gathered at Mr Simpson’s funeral and memorial service in Sherborne.
Mr Simpson won Olympic gold at Beijing 2008 and silver at London 2012.
A CHARITY has been founded in Mr Simpson’s memory for the next generation of young sailors.
The Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation was founded by the Olympian’s wife Leah, team mates and friends Iain Percy and Sir Ben Ainslie.
It honours Mr Simpson’s life and legacy by encouraging youngsters into sailing.
Some $250,000 was raised at an inaugural fundraising dinner and celebration of Mr Simpson’s life in early September in San Francisco.
In addition, The Bart Project was also set up in honour of Mr Simpson so that his sons, Freddie and Hamish, can feel closer to him as they grow.
Find The Bart Project on Facebook and visit Andrewsimpsonsailing.org for more about the foundation.
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