Eric Ortiz, a former cheerleader for the University of Louisville and the GymTyme All-Stars, passed away on Saturday, October 22, 2022, at the age of 30. His cause of death has not been made public, but TMZ Sports reported that he “died unexpectedly” in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky.
A Champion on and off the Floor
Ortiz was a cheerleading legend who won 10 national championships and two world championships during his career. He was a member of the University of Louisville cheerleading team from 2011 to 2015, where he helped the Cardinals win four national titles. He also competed with the GymTyme All-Stars, a prestigious cheerleading program based in Louisville, where he won six national titles and two world titles.
Ortiz was known for his incredible skills as a stunter, tumbler, jumper, dancer, and performer. He could do it all and he did it with passion, charisma, and excellence. He was a leader and a mentor to many young cheerleaders who looked up to him. He was also a sweet, amazing, and genuine person who always had a smile, a hug, and a reason to laugh. He was a positive and uplifting presence who touched the lives of many people in the cheer community and beyond.
Tributes and Condolences
The news of Ortiz’s death shocked and saddened many people who knew him or admired him. His former teams, coaches, friends, and fans expressed their grief and condolences on social media. They shared photos, videos, and memories of Ortiz, celebrating his achievements and his personality. They also offered support and prayers to his family and loved ones.
GymTyme All-Stars released a statement on their Facebook page, saying, “Eric Ortiz was a force when he joined our program. He could stunt, tumble, jump, dance, and perform with some of the greatest athletes that have ever stepped a shoe onto a cheer floor. He was captivating as an athlete. He could do it all and that he did. He was a leader at practice and on the competition floor.”
The statement continued, “Eric was a sweet, amazing, and genuine person. There were always plenty of smiles, hugs, and reasons to laugh when he was near. His positivity was infectious with his teammates, program, and friends. He was a light that pushed whatever darkness and worry present- away.”
The statement concluded, “As we all face this moment of darkness together, we will remember that we are not alone. We still have each other and our memories of you. We will miss you terribly but know you would want us to live our best life. Thank you for letting us be a part of your magnificent time here.”
Gabi Butler, a star of the Netflix show Cheer, also paid tribute to Ortiz on her Facebook page, saying, “My heart is completely torn into a million pieces…. the thought of not being able to hear your laugh or see that beautiful smile shatters me. Eric Ortiz, you were the most beautiful soul i’ve ever met.”
She added, “You were always there for me no matter what and always made me feel so special. You were my big brother and I will forever cherish every moment we had together. You taught me so much and I am so grateful for you. I love you so much and I will miss you more than words can explain. Rest in peace angel.”
According to his obituary, Ortiz is survived by his parents, his sister, his brother, his niece, his nephew, and many other relatives and friends. There will be a visitation for Ortiz on Thursday, October 28, 2022, in Bronx, New York. A funeral service will follow on Friday, October 29, 2022, at St. Raymond’s Church in Bronx, New York.
Eric Ortiz was a cheerleader who inspired and entertained millions of people with his talent and his spirit. He was a champion who left a lasting legacy in the cheer world. He was a friend who brought joy and happiness to everyone who knew him. He was a son, a brother, an uncle, and a loved one who will be dearly missed by his family and his community. He was a bright star who left this world too soon, but his light will never fade.