Montauban's Kelly Meafua dies aged 32 in tragic accident

Montauban's Kelly Meafua dies aged 32 in tragic accident

Former Waratahs and Samoa sevens player Kelly Meafua has died aged 32 after jumping off a bridge while celebrating a win for his club team in France.

Reports out of France state that the flanker was celebrating Montauban's PROD2 victory over Narbonne with his teammates before he jumped more than 20 metres from the Pont Vieux bridge into the Tarn river.

Christopher Vaotoa reportedly went to Meafua's aid but had to be rescued by firefighters and was taken to hospital with hypothermia.

Meafua's body was then recovered the following morning.

"Everyone at USM (Union Sportive Montauban) is in complete shock, Kelly was so well liked," the club said in a statement.

Montauban also posted a tribute to Meafua on its website.

"USM Sapiac painfully announces the death of Kelly Meafua on the night of Friday to Saturday. One of his teammates tried to rescue him, without success.

"Transported to the hospital for hypothermia, he (Vaotoa) was released this morning in good health. All training is suspended until further notice.

"The entire USM Sapiac club is shocked by this tragedy, and has a thought for his wife, his children, his teammates, and more generally, all club lovers.

"Kelly was a player very appreciated by all, his joie de vivre (zest for life) was infectious and radiant."


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