The 46-year-old bodybuilder, Mr. Rich Piana, has been confirmed dead by his estranged wife who said she was “in tears” as she paid a touching tribute to him.
Fellow bodybuilders and fans spoke of their shock amid previously unconfirmed reports Piana had died after spending more than two weeks in a coma following a possible overdose.
Sara Piana had on her Instagram post, said: “I’m in tears writing this that @1dayumay has just passed away. I can barely believe this … I am so saddened & heartbroken that he didn’t make it.’’
“I just want to say THANK YOU Rich for teaching me so much about life, whether it was the easy or the hard way.”
“Rich, I hope you feel better now in heaven and that you’re up there healthy, smiling & telling everyone ‘how it is, being REAL & doing your thing’. Rest In Peace
Fellow social media body building star and friend Bradley Martyn posted a picture of himself with 46-year-old workout champ Piana on Instagram with the message “Rest in peace”.
Neither Piana’s partner or company have confirmed his death but hundreds of tributes were earlier posted on social media as rumours swirled.
James Mooney, co-founder of Gunsmith Clothing posted a message on twitter reading: “Gone too soon brother. What a sad day, can’t even believe it’s true … truly heartbreaking.”
Professional bodybuilder Dan Fine posted a tribute saying: “RIP to my great brother in iron @1dayumay #richpiana. Love you brother and I know you’re crushing it at the Great Gym in the Sky.
“You’ve left behind a legion of friends and fans the world over.”
Australian actor and bodybuilder Calum von Moger said: “A big man with a big heart- RIP Rich Piana.” James Mooney in his tweet said: “ Gone too soon brother. What a sad day, can’t even believe it’s true…truly heartbreaking.