KUALA LUMPUR: Athletics legend Hanapiah Nasir, a decathlon ace known as “Ironman”, died in hospital today of complications from leukaemia. He was 65.
News of his death was confirmed by Noorul Ariffin Abdul Majeed, chairman of the national athletes welfare foundation.
He said Hanapiah died at 6pm at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital from organ failure caused by leukaemia. Hanapiah’s remains will be buried at the Jalan Ampang Muslim cemetery tomorrow.
“Yesterday, his daughter took him to the hospital at about 4pm and he was admitted to the intensive care unit after he was found to be suffering from low blood pressure.
“Hanapiah had leukaemia about three years ago and almost recovered after undergoing treatment. However, the leukaemia returned and caused organ failure,” he said when contacted today.
Hanapiah won SEA Games gold medals in the long jump (1985), 110m hurdles (1985) and decathlon (1981 and 1983). He also won a silver in the 4x100m event with Rabuan Pit, Sivalingam Govindasamy and Nordin Jadi in 1985 and bronze medals in 110m hurdles (1983) and decathlon (1991).
He continued to be active in sports after calling it a day and even took up the post of national athletics head coach from 2005 to 2009.