German Rainbow 6 Siege pro player Arif ‘Next1’ Keskin has passed away at the age of 24.
The former Chaos Esports player had been hospitalized with the virus which has caused a global pandemic.
In April, NEXT1 warned his Twitter followers of how serious the illness could be, even for young people. On April 15, he thanked friends and fans for their well-wishes, and said hospital staff were “watching my health status really good.”
Thanks to all these lovely Words. I love u all.❤ Theyre watching my Health status really good.
— Next1. (@Next1r6) April 15, 2021
He had gone to hospital on April 13, sharing: “I’m driving to the hospital, literally dying. Can’t breath, coughing so hard, no power, always cold. It is horrible.”
On May 23, news of Next1’s passing was confirmed.
Next1 most recently played for ChaosEC in the EUL. He was admitted to the hospital mid-April and tragically lost his battle against COVID.
— Parker Mackay 🇧🇷 (@INTERRO) May 23, 2021
With Chaos Esports, his most recent team, Next1 finished 1st place at the Nordic Championship 2020: Finals in September. He parted ways with Chaos at the end of January, and had been a free agent.
Rainbow 6 community pays tribute to Next1
Fellow pro players and community members paid tribute to Next1. Fellow German pro player Kevin ‘Sua’ Stahnke wrote ” I am lost for words and can’t describe how I feel. There was so much we wanted to get done, so much we had planned. And now you’re gone. I am lost for words.”
This morning a dear friend lost his fight to Covid. I am lost for words and can't describe how i feel. There was so much we wanted to get done, so much we had planned. And now you're gone. I am lost for words. Please take care after yourselves.
Rest in Peace Arif 🕯️
— Sua (@Suafps) May 23, 2021
Rogue’s Leon ‘LeonGids’ Giddens reminded people to be careful, even when so close to getting back to normality.
COVID is real, and it affects more people then you know. Please be careful even if we’re so close to some normality.
R.I.P. @Next1r6 ❤️
— LeonGids 🇧🇷 (@LeonGids) May 23, 2021
Team Secret’s Ville ‘SHA77E’ Palola wrote, “All my prayers and thoughts go to his family and friends. He was always friendly and it was a pleasure to get to know him. Rest in peace friend”
I am loss at words, some while ago i heard Next1 is in hospital due to COVID and and now we lost our dear friend this morning. All my prayers and thoughts go to his family and friends. He was always friendly and it was a pleasure to get to know him. Rest in peace friend ❤️
— Ville Palola (@sha77e_r6) May 23, 2021
Commentator James ‘Sternab’ Parkinson, who once played alongside Next1 on Defusekids, said he would miss his former teammate.
Really hard to hear about Next1 passing away, he was my teammate for 6 months and my friend. I’ll miss him 😔
— GAMMA Sternab (@SternabR6) May 23, 2021
Tributes are expected to be paid at the Rainbow Six Invitational, currently underway in Paris, with the grand final between NIP and Team Liquid.