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UPDATE: Dane County Medical Examiner releases identity of dead Ironman competitor, cites accidental drowning

UPDATE (WKOW) — The Dane County’s Medical Examiner released the name and cause of death for the competitor who died Sunday competing in the Ironman 70.3.

The Medical Examiner’s Office said in a press release Monday that Michael McCulloch, 61, of Cottage Grove died in a manner “consistent with an accidental drowning due in part to a medical event.”

The death remains under investigation by the Dane County Sheriff’s Office and the Dane County Medical Examiner’s Office.


MADISON (WKOW) — The man who died and the other man who was hospitalized after having medical emergencies Sunday during the Ironman 70.3 race on Lake Monona in Madison both are from Wisconsin.

Their names have not been released yet as the investigation continues.

The man who died was in his 60s, and the man hospitalized in critical condition is in his 30s, according to a Madison Fire Department spokesperson. The fire department has not received an update on the man’s condition.

MORE: Athletes help rescue two during IRONMAN race, two taken to hospital, one dead 

Officials say the department was notified that an athlete was found unresponsive in the water around 8 a.m., and in need of advanced life support from paramedics.

About an hour later, MFD was notified that a second unresponsive patient was being pulled to shore for similar emergency medical treatment.

Madison fire officials say the death is not considered a drowning at this time, and it is believed that the athlete suffered a medical issue in the water prior to rescue.

IRONMAN officials confirm the two athletes had separate incidents requiring medical attention during the swim portion of the race, saying the surviving person is still receiving treatment at the hospital.

In a statement Sunday afternoon, race officials said they’ll continue supporting the athlete and the athlete’s family, releasing the following message about safety on the course:

The well-being of our competitors is paramount and we are grateful for the effort and quick support of medical personnel. We will continue to work with the local authorities to gather all the details on these incidents and will continue to do everything possible to provide a safe environment for our athletes. In respect of the families and athletes privacy, we will have no further comment at this time.

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Dan Plutchak

Social Media and Digital Content Manager, 27 News

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