Tributes have been paid to Franck Lascassies, the former France under-20s development player who reportedly took his own life at the age of 21. The prop, who spent time with Bayonne and Pau, died earlier this week and his funeral took place on Friday.
France Rugby tweeted: “We learned with immense sadness of the death of Franck Lascassies, a former player of our teams of #FranceJeunes at the age of 21. Our condolences to his family and loved ones.”
Bayonne tweeted: “It is with great sadness that we learned of the death of Franck Lascassies, 21, who went through the categories at Bayonne before leaving for Pau. The club offers its sincere condolences to the whole family and loved ones of Franck.”
Pau added: “The club learned with immense sadness the death of Franck Lascassies, a training centre player from 2017 to 2019. In this terrible ordeal, the club joins the pain of the family and those close to them.”
World Rugby vice-president Bernard Laporte said: “I’m saddened to learn of the death of Franck Lascassies, a player of the France U20 development team. With his team, he also won the European U18 title. Franck was full of talent. My condolences to his family and loved ones.”
The Pacific Rugby Welfare said: “Sad news from France that a young Pacific Islander has tragically taken his life at age 21.”
Mental health has become a huge talking point in rugby in recent years, ex-Scotland international Graeme Morrison recently telling RugbyPass how damaging it can be. “A lot of players need to understand that being a rugby player doesn’t define who you are as a person. It really doesn’t. We really need to get over that,” he said.
“I was sitting having dinner with my parents, glazed over, not taking in anything that they were saying. I looked out the balcony and thought, I could literally jump off this right now. It was a fleeting thought but it was definitely very powerful. It still feels quite raw now.”
?? Nous avons appris avec une immense tristesse aujourd'hui le décès de Franck Lascassies, ancien joueur de nos équipes de #FranceJeunes à l'âge de 21 ans. Toutes nos condoléances à sa famille et à ses proches. ?? pic.twitter.com/aIAaUXSRVn
— France Rugby (@FranceRugby) June 11, 2020
C'est avec une immense tristesse que nous avons appris la mort de Franck Lascassies, 21ans, passé par les catégories de jeunes de l'Aviron Bayonnais avant de partir pour la Section Paloise
Le club présente ses plus sincères condoléances à toute la famille et aux proches de Franck pic.twitter.com/iElxx2ho6Q
— Aviron Bayonnais (@avironrugbypro) June 11, 2020
La Section a appris avec une immense tristesse la disparition de Franck Lascassies, joueur du Centre de Formation de 2017 à 2019.
Dans cette terrible épreuve le club s’associe à la douleur de la famille et de ses proches. pic.twitter.com/06TXHID1sG
— SectionPaloise (@SectionPaloise) June 11, 2020
J’apprends avec tristesse le décès de Franck Lascassies, joueur de l’équipe de France U20 développement.
Avec son équipe, il avait aussi décroché le titre de champion d’Europe des U18. Franck était pétri de talent.
Toutes mes condoléances à sa famille et à ses proches.
— Bernard Laporte (@BernardLaporte_) June 11, 2020
Sad news from France that a young Pacific Islander has tragically taken his life at age 21 https://t.co/WGGOqXmEoR
— PacificRugbyWelfare (@pacificwelfare) June 12, 2020
Very sad for his family and friends ???. Please my fellow islanders especially here in Europe, don’t be ashame or shy to talk to someone you’re not alone. It’s ok not to be ok. ??
— Elvis taione216 (@ElvisTaione) June 12, 2020
My Pacific Rugby family, if anyone out there needs help or needs talking please don’t be afraid to talk to someone or ask for help. Or DM me if need. We are here for you. #YouAreNotAlone #rugbyfamily #MentalHealthAwareness https://t.co/jAZNEWq7sJ
— James Johnston (@JayVJohnston) June 12, 2020
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