The first figure skater from Kazakhstan to earn an Olympic medal was stabbed to death after confronting robbers.
Olympic figure skater Denis Ten died Thursday after a stabbing in Kazakhstan. On Friday, Kazakh authorities said they had identified both suspects involved in Ten's murder and detained one. Police released a photograph of the second as they continue their search for the suspected stabber.
His tragic passing was confirmed by the Kazakh Ministry of Healthcare, who told Kazakh news agency Kazinform that Ten "is not with us anymore."
Ten was stabbed in the country's largest city, Almaty, after confronting two men who were attempting to steal his car mirrors. Paramedics rushed Ten to the hospital but emergency efforts to save the skater's life were unsuccessful.
The young Olympian was Kazakhstan's most accomplished figure skater. As the 2014 Olympic bronze medalist in Sochi, he was the first Kazakhstani figure skater to make the podium at the Olympics. He was the 2017 Winter Universiade champion, a two-time world champion medalist, 2015 Four Continents champion and a five-time national champion of Kazakhstan. He finished 27th at this year’s Olympics in South Korea.
Ten also acted as an ambassador for his hometown Almaty’s bid for the 2022 Winter Games, which was eventually awarded to Beijing.
The International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach mourned Ten's passing in a Tweet on Thursday saying: "Denis Ten was a great athlete and a great ambassador for his sport. A warm personality and a charming man. Such a tragedy to lose him at such a young age.”
Others in the figure skating community also mourned Ten's unexpected death.
My skating friend, @Tenis_Den, passed away today. He was so kind to everyone and a huge inspiration to me and so many other people. Murdered in the streets of Kazakhstan. Denis, thank you for showing us how to be a champion. Your time with us was way too short. Love you forever.— Adam Rippon (@Adaripp) July 19, 2018
I feel so honored and grateful to have shared the ice with @Tenis_Den. One of the most beautiful skaters to have graced our sport. My thoughts are with his family during this unimaginable time. I feel so lucky to have made memories with Denis that I will cherish forever...— Patrick Chan (@Pchiddy) July 19, 2018
Ten was one of Kazakhstan's most high-profile athletes.