Rogge was the eighth president of the IOC, succeeded the Spanish Juan Antonio Samaranch, and later gave the witness to the current president, the German Thomas Bach.

Jacques Rogge, the Belgian Olympic sailor and orthopedic surgeon who led the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as president for 12 years, has died. He was 79 years old.

The IOC announced his death this Sunday (08.29.2021) without giving details. Rogge’s health had visibly declined when attending Olympic events since his presidency ended in 2013. The IOC announced his passing Sunday without providing a cause of death.

“With great sadness, the International Olympic Committee announces the death of former IOC President Jacques Rogge. He was 79 years old,” the text reads.

Rogge was the eighth president of the IOC, succeeded the Spanish Juan Antonio Samaranch, and later gave the witness to the current president, the German Thomas Bach.

Passionate about sports

After being a Belgian rugby international, Jacques Rogge participated three times in the Olympic Games as an athlete, in 1968, 1972, and 1976, sailing in Finn, a category of which he was world champion.

Before becoming president, the IOC headed the Belgian Olympic Committee and the body that brings together the fifty European Olympic Committees.

“Jacques was above all passionate about sports, who loved being in contact with athletes. A passion that he transmitted to all who knew him,” Thomas Bach underlined in the statement.

“He was a dedicated president, who contributed to modernizing and transforming the IOC. He will remain in the memory for having encouraged the practice of sport among young people and for creating the Youth Olympic Games. He was also a fervent advocate of clean and clean sport. of the relentless fight against doping, “recalled the current IOC president.

“The whole of the Olympic movement mourns the loss of a great friend and passionate about sport,” he concluded.

“Your legacy will continue in the memory of many generations of athletes,” he added.

The Belgian town of Deinze, in the Ghent region, where Jacques Rogge lived, will open a register of condolences from Monday, announced this Sunday the mayor Jan Vermeulen.

Rogge had in his time as president of the IOC a difficult entry challenge.

First, that of starting a new stage after 21 years of Samaranch’s presidency, which changed the image of Olympism and gave it a new historical orientation. The second, that of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics scandal, a winter edition marked by doping cases and allegations of bribery to obtain the venue for the event.

After leaving the presidency in 2013, this orthopedic surgeon by profession opted for a low profile and an honorary position at the IOC, where he left the spotlight to Thomas Bach, his successor.

During Rogge’s presidency, South America secured the site of its first Olympic Games. It was in 2009, when Rio de Janeiro was chosen as the host city for the 2016 event, which was already disputed with Bach as president.

Amelia Warner– After graduating from NYU with a master's degree in history, She was also a columnist for many local newspapers. Amelia Warner mostly covers Entertainment topics, but at times loves to write about movie reviews as well.

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