Local sports community in shock after sudden death of David Ravenhill

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The local sports community is in shock after the sudden death yesterday of a soccer school champion, program creator & coach.

David Ravenhill was a longtime teacher, and co-founded the Reynolds Centre for Soccer Excellence at Reynolds Secondary in Saanich. 

He was also a former coach of the Victoria Highlanders Prospects program. 

CFAX-1070 spoke with David's life-long friend, former soccer star & motivational speaker Simon Keith, at his home in Las Vegas:

"You know those who knew David knew that he was extremely fit, and he would run often. And my understanding is he went for a run yesterday morning and when he got home he just collapsed.  And you know that's all we know at the moment, there will be an autopsy in the next day or two. "

Keith says Ravenhill's death is hitting many in the soccer community very hard --  including recent grads of the soccer academy who gathered last night at Reynolds to remember and honour him.

" And the boys and girls from this years.. and all the kids in the school now, they all gathered at Reynolds last night and just toasted David and just sort of mourned him. And they know how special he was to them. I just can't say it enough, this guy is just such a special dude, and it's just devastating."

Simon Keith, the first athlete in the world to play a professional sport after getting a heart transplant when he was just 21, and a second heart just last year, says David was only 57 years old when he died.

Keith encourages everyone to undergo a medical checkup, including a heart exam.  

Keith says his friend's legacy is that he made everyone want to be better, and developed so many kids in the sport of soccer, and was a pillar of the community.

He adds he is thankful David, a huge Liverpool fan, was able to see his team win the title this year.

David Ravenhill leaves his wife Karen, and 2 sons.