Euroleague Basketball was saddened to hear of the sudden passing of FIBA secretary general and International Olympic Committee member Patrick Baumann. Baumann was only 51 years of age when he died early Sunday of an apparent heart attack in Argentina, where he was attending the Youth Olympic Games.
"I am saddened by the news of Patrick passing away at such a young age," Euroleague Basketball President and CEO Jordi Bertomeu said. "He dedicated his entire life to the sport he loved, basketball, and had a tremendously successful professional career at all levels. He even transcended the sport of basketball and became a fundamental piece in the Olympic movement. My thoughts and prayers, and those of all Euroleague Basketball clubs, are with his family and friends, and most especially with his wife and two children."
Baumann was player, coach and referee in his native of Switzerland and in Italy, where he went to university. After attending law school, Baumann joined FIBA in 1994 as a lawyer and served as its deputy secretary general from 1995 until he was unanimously appointed secretary general in 2002. Baumann was nominated to the International Olympic Committee in 2007.
To honor the memory of Mr. Baumann, IOC President Thomas Bach ordered the Olympic flag to be flown at half-mast at IOC headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland and at the Youth Olympic Games in Argentina. Mr. Baumann was president of the organizing committee of the next Youth Olympic Games, set for 2020 in Lausanne.
FIBA, in its official confirmation press release, said that Mr. Baumann received immediate medical attention in Buenos Aires, but to no avail. Mr. Baumann was just the third FIBA Secretary General, after Dr. William Jones and Borislav Stankovic. He is survived by his wife and two children.
A moment of silence in Baumann's memory will be held at all Turkish Airlines EuroLeague and 7DAYS EuroCup games this week.