The SUP community is reeling from shocking news coming out of Annapolis, Maryland.
Early this morning, Capital SUP published a Facebook post announcing the tragic passing of inspirational SUP athlete, Cody Iorns. According to the post, the Annapolis resident had gone downwind paddling Wednesday with fellow Capital SUP paddlers, when he drowned and was unable to be resuscitated.
According to a report in the Capital Gazette – the same newspaper that lost five journalists only hours later in a horrific shooting -- Iorns and three other people were paddling off Tolly Point in the Chesapeake Bay on Wednesday evening around 6:30 p.m. As strong gusts and choppy conditions created challenging conditions, fellow paddlers saw that Iorns had fallen from his board and was floating face down next to it. The group attempted CPR on Iorns until a rescue boat from the Anne Arundel County Fire Department reached the group, though medics were unable to revive his pulse.
According to the report, Iorns was wearing a PFD but it was not inflated.
The 25-year-old former Army medic from Washington, D.C., was widely celebrated in the SUP community as one of the sport’s most inspiring athletes, both on and off the water. After losing both arms in a motorcycle accident, Iorns used prosthetic limbs and a custom paddle to begin standup paddling.
Not content just to paddle, Iorns began entering SUP races and pushing the boundaries of adaptive sports. In fact, just a couple weeks ago he competed in the Bay Bridge Paddle in Annapolis, Maryland, a nine-mile race.
9 mile grind at the #baybridgepaddle. Huge thank you to @capitalsup and the race training team for setting me up for success and being the voice in my head that keeps the 🔨 dropping! It's always a honor to be on the course with everyone who shares a passion for living life to the fullest. #cantstopwontstop 📷: @_brianmeyer
Iorns positive attitude and passion for the sport left a lasting impression on those he met. But Iorns also gained the attention of top media outlets including National Geographic, who released a video highlighting Iorns accomplishments and story:
Our thoughts are with Iorns’ friends and family, as well as with the entire Capital SUP team. We will update this story as more information comes out.