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Who is Eric Wahl? Grant Wahl's gay brother says late US journo wore rainbow shirt to World Cup for him

Alleging foul play in Grant Wahl's death, Eric said, 'He told me he received death threats. I do not believe my brother just died'
UPDATED DEC 10, 2022
Eric Wahl (L) alleged foul play in brother Grant Wahl's death (Instagram/eewahl, @grant_wahl)
Eric Wahl (L) alleged foul play in brother Grant Wahl's death (Instagram/eewahl, @grant_wahl)

LUSAIL, QATAR: Soccer journalist Grant Wahl's brother, Eric Wahl, who announced the football writer's death, believes foul play from the Qatari government may have been involved and alleges “he was killed” following a protest in support of the LGBTQ+ community. Last month, Grant was detained for nearly half an hour during US opening match against Wales and was barred entry as security guards demanded him to remove the gay pride shirt he wore.

Grant, 48, died while covering Argentina’s quarterfinal win over the Netherlands at the FIFA World Cup on Friday, December 9, his brother, Eric revealed. He collapsed at Lusail Iconic Stadium and was rushed to a nearby hospital. It’s unclear whether he died after he was hospitalized or while being transported.


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Who is Eric Wahl?

Eric, hailing from Seattle, Washington, said he is gay and his brother wore the gay pride shirt, showing a soccer ball surrounded by a rainbow, to the World Cup for him. In a video posted to his Instagram account, Eric said, “My name is Eric Wahl. I live in Seattle, Washington. I am Grant Wahl’s brother. I’m gay. I’m the reason he wore the rainbow shirt to the World Cup. My brother was healthy. He told me he received death threats. I do not believe my brother just died. I believe he was killed. And I just beg for any help.”

"We're still trying to find out. He collapsed at the stadium, was given CPR, was taken by Uber to hospital and died according to Celine. We just spoke with the state department and Celine has spoken to Ron Klain and the White House," he added.

The Qatari government clamped down on LGBTQ+ protests at the World Cup despite earlier promising not to do so. Grant criticized the Qatari government on December 8 in an article on his Substack, “They just don’t care. Qatari World Cup organizers don’t even hide their apathy over migrant worker deaths, including the most recent one”. He slammed the Supreme Committee in charge of Qatar’s World Cup, referring to a Filipino migrant worker who died during Saudi Arabia's training during the group stage after he suffered a fatal blow to the head during a fall in a forklift accident. He noted that the information was kept secret until The Athletic’s Adam Crafton covered it. 

Ned Price, a State Department representative, tweeted, “We were deeply saddened to learn of the death of Grant Wahl and send our condolences to his family, with whom we have been in close communication. We are engaged with senior Qatari officials to see to it that his family’s wishes are fulfilled as expeditiously as possible."