RIO 2016

Olympics: organs from tragic canoe coach save Rio lives

The family of Stefan Henze, who died on Monday from injuries suffered in a taxi accident, have been praised for their "enormous generosity".

Olympics: organs from tragic canoe coach save Rio lives
TORSTEN BLACKWOOD AFP

The organs of a German canoe slalom coach killed in a taxi accident at the 2016 Olympics have helped to save four lives in Rio, it emerged on Wednesday.

Stefan Henze, 35, a former world champion and 2004 Olympic silver medallist, died in a Rio hospital on Monday despite emergency surgery on the injuries he sustained while travelling from the canoeing venue in the early hours of Friday.

But the German's organs have been successfully used on a quartet of patients, the health authorities for Rio de Janeiro confirmed to SID, an AFP subsidiary.

Henze (right) after winning silver at the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

"The heart, liver and both kidneys were successfully transplanted. He has saved four lives," spokeswoman Roberta Napolis told SID.

Henze's family, who were with him in Rio when he died, had approved the removal of his organs to help others.

After his heart was successfully transplanted at Rio's public hospital Instituto Nacional de Cardiologia (INC), chief surgeon Alexandre Sicilano told national newspaper O Globo: "The family of the German showed enormous generosity".