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2006 Greco-Roman World bronze medalist Lindsey Durlacher, 36, passed away unexpectedly in his sleep early on Saturday morning in Denver, Colo.

Durlacher was at home recovering from a surgery on Wednesday. He had suffered a broken sternum in a snowmobile accident in February. No details are available on the cause of his death.

Arrangements have not yet been finalized. USA Wrestling will share the information as soon as it becomes available. Preliminary plans are for a memorial service in the Chicago area, where Durlacher grew up and where he has family. He had numerous friends across the United States and around the world.

?The wrestling community is extremely shocked and saddened by the loss of Lindsey Durlacher,? said USA Wrestling Executive Director Rich Bender. ?We lost a true champion today. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends during this difficult time.?

For the last year, Durlacher has served as a resident coach at the RiNo Sport Galleri in Denver.

?Lindsey was a close friend that I have known for over 15 years and the recent news was tragic. His loss was sudden and unexpected and not only was he a friend but he was also a cherished part of the RiNo Team. We will miss his presence on a daily basis and offer our deepest sympathy to those closest to him. We will cherish his life and success both on and off the mat,? said Ryan Tobin of RiNo Sport Galleri.

Durlacher won his World Greco-Roman bronze medal at 55 kg/121 lbs. at the 2006 World Championships in Guangzhou, China. He placed fifth at the 2007 World Championships in Baku, Azerbaijan, helping lead the United States to its first-ever World Team Title in Greco-Roman wrestling. He was also a member of the 2005 U.S. World Team.

He won the 2006 U.S. Open and was a runner-up in the event five times. Durlacher was a 2003 Pan American Championships silver medalist, and won a silver medal in the 2007 Pan American Games competing up a weight class.

Among the major events he won were the Dave Schultz Memorial International, the New York AC International, the Sunkist Kids International, the Slovenia Grand Prix and others. For many years, Durlacher was a U.S. Olympic Training Center resident athlete in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Continue Reading Full Article by By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling