From Puyallup High, Former Standout Athlete Loses Out to Covid-19

Dan Raley

Eli Sevener most likely wouldn't want to hear you use the words coronavirus and hoax in the same sentence. 

He'd probably wonder why you won't wear a mask.

He'd ask how much proof do you really need?

If only Eli were here to have these discussions.

Sadly, he's part of the proof for how this dreaded disease works.

Sevener died on Wednesday from COVID-19 after his family members had him taken off life support. He was a 2019 graduate and an athlete at Puyallup High School. He wore the purple and gold for multiple seasons. His death has rocked the bedroom community east of Tacoma.

"It breaks my heart to inform everyone that Eli has been taken off of life support and has passed on to heaven this afternoon," Zach Sevener, Eli's brother, tweeted. "Our family is devastated and in shock by the way everything happened. He was such as fantastic, friend, co-worker and son. He had so much more to give to this world. We ask that he is never forgotten and that you take some time today and remember your positive memories of him. He will be watching over us as we go through the rest of our lives. #RestinPeaceEli."

Sevener hails from the same high school that has sent an abundance of athletes to the University of Washington, among them quarterbacks Billy Joe Hobert and the Huard brothers, Brock and Damon; receivers Joe Kralik and Dane Looker; and offensive lineman Tom Gallagher, among several others who became Huskies or went elsewhere to play. 

Sevener was a standout pitcher, a lefty, according to Tacoma's News Tribune, and a reserve football player for Puyallup High. Last year, he helped the Vikings baseball team go on an eight-game win streak and earn a share of the Class 4A South Puget Sound League title. 

Now he's gone.

The Puyallup baseball team will retire his No. 21 and honor him during the 2021 season. 

It helps explain why some might be willing to protest or sit out a season over health care assurances.

All it takes is the death of a young athlete to make COVID-19 more real.

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Comments (11)
No. 1-4

Strange disease, the COVID-19 is. Some people contract, and get through it, almost without noticing. Others, such as this young man, succumb to it. RIP.


Sports Illustrated asserting that someone "died of Covid" isn't enough evidence for me, sorry. Another article said he died due to "complications from" Covid. Still another article only reported that a Tweet on Twitter reported his death was related to Covid.

Dan Raley
Dan Raley


I'm not really interested in the politics surrounding the pandemic.


The coverage and article pay respects to this young man. The title however... Ouch. A pun is not the way to go when reporting on a death.