In this June 8, 2018 file photo, Houston's Cameron Burrell raises two fingers to indicate Houston's back-to-back men's 400-meter relay wins, during the third day of the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships at Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore. Burrell, the former NCAA national champion sprinter died on Monday, Aug. 9, 2021 according to the University of Houston, where he starred from 2013-2018. (Andy Nelson/The Register-Guard via AP, File)

Track star and former University of Houston sprinter Cameron Burrell died Monday at the age of 26. His passing was confirmed by his father, Olympic gold medalist Leroy Burrell. 

“My family is extremely saddened with the loss of our son, Cameron, last night,” stated the elder Burrell, who currently works at his alma mater UH as head coach of its track and field program.  “We are going through profound sorrow and ask that all of our friends, extended University of Houston family, and the track and field community in the U.S. and abroad allow us to gather with our closest family and friends. We are profoundly grief-stricken, and thank everyone for the outpouring of prayers and support.”

The cause of the younger Burrell’s death is not yet known. 

The Gen-Z-aged track star was the godson of another former UH Cougar and track and field legend, Carl Lewis. Not only was Burrell’s father and godfather Olympic gold medal winners, so was his mother, Michelle Finn-Burrell, who earned her track and field gold medal in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics

In 2018, Burrell literally followed in his father’s footsteps when he won the NCAA individual championship in the 100-meter race, a championship his father accomplished three decades earlier. The younger Burrell ran anchor on the 4×100 relay team and helped his squad defend its NCAA national championship. 

“Cameron grew up around the Houston Athletics Department, worked hard, and developed himself into one of our greatest Track and Field stars,” Chris Pezman, University of Houston’s vice president of athletics, wrote in a statement. “To lose him so suddenly is tragic. We ask all University of Houston and track and field fans to keep Coach Burrell and his family in their thoughts and prayers.” 

-theGrio