Olympic Gold Medalist Camille Muffat Killed in Helicopter Crash in Argentina

Retired French swimmer Camille Muffat is reported to have died in a helicopter crash while filming a reality TV show in Argentina.

Muffat is a three-time Olympic medalist and former World Record holder. She held both the 400 SCM freestyle and 800 SCM freestyle World Records from November of 2012 to August of 2013.

As a two-time French Olympian in 2008 and 2012, she appeared in multiple Olympic finals. Her highest finish at the 2008 Beijing Olympics was fifth as a member of the women’s 4×200 freestyle relay. In the 2012 London Olympics, she won a gold medal in the women’s 400 freestyle, setting a new Olympic record in the process. She earned a silver medal in the women’s 200 meter freestyle, and a bronze medal as a member of the women’s 4×200 freestyle relay. She was also the third Frenchwoman in history to earn 3 medals in a summer or winter Olympic Games. Outside of the pool, she was named the 2012 French Sportswoman of the Year.

Muffat was to be on the cast of the French version of the Swedish reality TV show, “Dropped,” in which two teams of celebrities –in this case, elite athletes– are dropped in difficult terrain where the challenge is to find civilization. The first team to reach a power source and call the base wins; the other team must vote a team member off.

Muffat, two other French sports figures, five members of the production staff, and the two Argentine pilots are reported to have died when the two helicopters collided in mid-air.

Muffat retired in the summer of 2014, somewhat abruptly, at only 24-years old.

The death of Muffat, along with boxer Alexis Vastine, and sailor Florence Arthaud has been confirmed by local officials, according to French news site 20minutes, among others. Muffat’s fellow French Olympic swimmer, Alain Bernard, was also a part of the show, but has been confirmed to be alive by both his agent and his mother.

The Argentine site, La Rioja es Noticia, released the list of names of those who perished in the crash:

Juan Carlos Castillo, helicopter pilot
Roberto Abate, helicopter pilot,
Laurent Sbasnik, filming
Lucier Mei-Dalby, filming
Volodia Guinard, filming
Brice Guilbert, art direction
Edouard Gilles, sound
Camille Muffat, Olympic swimmer
Alexis Vastine, Olympic boxer
Florence Arhaud, champion sailor

More details will be reported as they are made available.

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7 years ago

What a horrible way to die. RIP:(

Brian Page
7 years ago

What a shame. I just found out watching the 2016 Olympic swiimming and wondered where she was. I watched her in London, and am so sorry to hear about Camille. What a champion!!!!

Stevie Ray
7 years ago

So sad,my prayers for Camille’s family and friends.

8 years ago

Beautiful and talented girl. Such a loss.

8 years ago

Camille will be always in my heart forever

9 years ago

The amount of people commenting that they wish her to rest in peace on the 400 free youtube video from London is simply amazing.

9 years ago

It’s so so so sad !!
Camille will always be in our head and our heart ! ='(
All french people loved her ! <3

9 years ago

I think I can speak for most swimming fans when I say I was really jolted — and saddened — by the news of Camille Muffat’s death this morning. Most of us, when we read of some celebrity dying, find it interesting, but not necessarily moving. But this was different: Muffat was one of us, and the memory of her swimming in London was fresh and vivid, not some long ago memory of a memory.

My view, like that of many who read this site, is simply the view from the bleachers. I had no personal connection with her, her teammates, or even any of her countrymen. But even from the bleachers, you could tell that Muffat seemed like… Read more »

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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