Former Schalke 04 toplaner, Pavle ‘Yoppa’ Kostić, has passed away. According to the official Balkan League of Legends esports league Twitter account, he unexpectedly died on November 23 due to COVID infection complications.
A professional LoL player since 2016, Yoppa is most recently known for long stints with MAD Lions, Vitality.Bee, and Schalke 04. The Serbian national became a free agent on November 16, at which point he began looking for opportunities for the upcoming season.
His passing, at just 23 years old, has shocked the community. From fellow players to team owners and media members, many are expressing grief and sending condolences to his family.
Today we say goodbye to Yoppa.
Pavle "Yoppa" Kostić passed away yesterday unexpectedly due to complications caused by a COVID infection.
Rest in peace, brother.
— Esports Balkan League (@FortunaEsports) November 24, 2021
Among those to respond to the news was Team Vitality’s owner, Fabien ‘Neo’ Devide. He reacted much like Yoppa’s peers have: “My heart is broken. My deepest condolences to his loved ones in this painful ordeal. We will miss you.”
Others who have reached out and expressed condolences include former fellow Schalke toplaner Sergen ‘Broken Blade’ Celik. Vitality jungler Oskar ‘Selfmade’ Boderek also summarized many’s struggles to believe the tragic news: “nah, that can’t be f**king real.”
Today we were informed that our former League of Legends player Yoppa has passed away.We have wonderful memories of you and our time spent with you in Berlin. You will remain forever engraved in our memories.Our thoughts are with your family and friends.Rest in peace, Pavle 💛 pic.twitter.com/8bWCigausa
— Team Vitality (@TeamVitality) November 24, 2021
Tragic news to all of us at MAD, and all those who knew and played with Yoppa. My heart goes out to his family and friends, I cannot even begin to imagine their grief at losing him at such a young age. Rest in Peace.
Stay safe and take care of each other. https://t.co/S4YbDiZsTP
— James MacCormack (@MacCLol) November 24, 2021
It remains unclear exactly what went wrong with the toplaner’s treatment. For now, most are simply remembering their appreciation for Yoppa, respecting his family’s privacy, and sharing condolences.