Dan Roundfield, a 12-year ABA/NBA veteran, tragically died off the coast of Aruba yesterday while trying to save his wife from choppy waters while they were swimming. The couple was on vacation in Aruba. Roundfield managed to save his wife, but he was swept out to sea according to multiple news reports.
Roundfield had been swimming with his wife, Bernie, off the southeastern tip of Aruba on Monday when they became caught in rough water beyond a protected reef area, said John Larmonie, a police spokesman on the southern Caribbean island. The former All Star was apparently swept away in a strong current as he tried to help his struggling wife, Larmonie said. Police, firefighters, the Coast Guard and volunteers searched for him, finding his body about 90 minutes later, trapped by rocks underwater.
Roundfield, 59, began his career with the Indiana Pacers, who were then in the American Basketball Association. The three-time NBA All Star center/forward was a member of the Atlanta Hawks for six seasons and also played for the Detroit Pistons and the Washington Bullets (now the Washington Wizards), and spent one season in Italy. He played college ball for Central Michigan.
NBA star Dominique Wilkins, now an executive with the Hawks, said in a statement of his former teammate…
Danny was the most honest and upfront person I knew, and I’m very stunned at hearing the news of his death.Danny’s one of my closest friends and he was a tremendous influence on my NBA career, on and off the court. He taught me how to be a professional and took me under his wing. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family, I will truly miss him.
Here is a 2011 interview with Dan Roundfield: