Tributes paid to 'loving dad' who died during triathlon event in Swansea

Andrew Ireland died during the Swansea Triathalon on Sunday, May 28. Credit: family photo/Activity Wales Events

The family of an athlete who died while taking part in the Swansea Triathlon has described him as a loving husband, father and grandfather who will be "greatly missed".

Andrew Ireland died during the swim section of the event on Sunday, May 28.

In a statement posted on social media, his family said: "We are heartbroken but have been comforted by the many messages of condolence and support we have received."Andrew was a charity worker for the homeless and an avid supporter of Welsh football. He was a keen cyclist and triathlete, a member of Tondu Wheelers and a parkrun regular."We would like to thank the emergency services, event organisers, volunteers and members of the public who assisted at the scene."The University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) Swansea Triathlon is one of the leading one-day sprint-distance triathlons in the country.

Around 1,500 people were expected to take part in Sunday's event, which included a 750m swim, 20km bike ride and 5k run. A statement from Activity Wales Events at the time, read: "It is with heavy hearts that we confirm the passing of an athlete during the swim section of today’s Triathlon. Our most sincere condolences go out to the family."We would like to thank the incredible efforts of the swim safety team, St John’s, Ambulance, the rapid response team, the police, volunteers and members of the public involved at the scene."A spokeswoman for UWTSD said: “The university is sad to hear the news that an individual has passed away during the Swansea Triathlon today. As sponsors of the event, we send our deepest condolences to the family and those affected by this tragedy."Following his death, many have expressed their condolences to the athlete on social media.

Martyn Norris wrote: "This is awful news. Condolences to all the family of the athlete concerned, and thoughts with all the support crew who no doubt gave their all to help."Darren Black wrote: "I’m saddened to hear this terrible news thoughts are with family and friends of the athlete", and Mary-Jayne Granville wrote: "So sad sending my condolences to the family and their friends at this difficult time."