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Minnesota Vikings history: A timeline of Korey Stringer’s death

Minnesota Vikings History
RVR Photos-USA TODAY Sports

On August 1st, 2001, Minnesota Vikings’ Pro Bowl right tackle Korey Stringer passed away from heat exhaustion. Do you remember what you were doing when you heard the news?

It was a sad moment throughout the NFL community when word broke of Stringer’s passing. We look back at the timeline of how that humid, gut-wrenching series of unfortunate events unfolded.

Minnesota Vikings Training Camp – Mankato, Minnesota

July 30, 2001

6:35 AM

  • Humidity levels reach 94% in Mankato, Minnesota

4:00 PM

  • Temperature 90°
  • Dew point 75°
  • Vikings begin their second practice of the day

4:45 PM

  • Heat index reaches 109°
  • The temperature, dew point, and heat index hit the highest recorded marks in Mankato on any training camp date in the past decade
  • Shortly after temps reached new highs, Korey Stringer left the field after vomiting due to heat exhaustion

July 31, 2001

  • Temperature reached a high of 91°
  • Heat index reached 111°
  • Korey Stringer cleared to practice

2:45 AM

  • Humidity levels reach 94 percent in Mankato, Minnesota

8:45 AM

  • Temperature 82° 
  • Dew point 77°
  • 84 percent humidity
  • Minnesota Vikings conduct two-hour morning practice in full pads
  • Stringer vomited three times during practice, yet insisted on finishing his work

11:15 AM

  • After practice, Stringer did extra conditioning work before collapsing to the ground

11:20 AM 

  • Stringer managed to get up on his own power, walking to an air-conditioned trailer

11:52 AM

12:00 PM

  • Paul Osterman, Vikings assistant trainer, calls for an ambulance

12:09 PM

  • Stringer gets into an ambulance

12:24 PM

  • Stringer arrives at Immanuel St. Joseph’s hospital in Mankato, Minnesota

12:35 PM

  • Stringer’s temperature measures 108.88°

August 1, 2001

1:50 AM

  • After 13 hours of doctors monitoring his condition, Korey Stringer was pronounced dead at age 27

August 2, 2001

  • Stringer’s autopsy later revealed his cause of death was organ failure due to heatstroke

November 19, 2001

  • Minnesota Vikings retire Korey Stringer’s No. 77 jersey at halftime against the New York Giants in Week 10
  • Stringer was also inducted into the Vikings Ring of Honor

April 2010

The Korey Stringer Institute (KS) is an exertional heat stroke prevention institute. Their mission is to “provide research, education, advocacy, and consultation to maximize performance, optimize safety, and prevent sudden death for the athlete, warfighter, and laborer.”