Sydney Jockey Nathan Berry Passes Away

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By Dhrubajyoti Biswas | April 4, 2014 3:54 PM EST

The 23-year-old Sydney jockey Nathan Berry left a vacuum as he passed away after struggling with serious illness while in Singapore.

Berry was flown back to Sydney on a chartered medical flight from Singapore. He remained in the hospital at Singapore for two weeks after he collapsed at the trackwork in Kanji.

He was initially diagnosed with viral encephalitis and later with Norse syndrome which is acute stage of epilepsy. He was put in induced coma when he made some improvement, but on Tuesday, his condition worsened.

Berry's twin brother Tommy Berry, who is also a notable jockey, was by the side of his brother in Singapore along with family members and close friend and rider Christian Reith.

Berry was married to Whitney Schofield, daughter of the famous jockey Glyn Schofield.

Peter V'Landy, chief executive of New South Wales Racing, said the news came as a major shock to the racing industry.

"Sadness is not a sufficient word to describe this tragedy. We are all very distressed and could not imagine the grief the family must be going through ... This was a young man that had the world at his feet," V'Landy said.

Earlier, Tommy Berry, who won the opening race at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday, dedicated his victory to his brother.

As a leading jockey, Nathan Berry's name is associated with the victory on Unencumbered in the Magic Million Classic of $2 million in January. At his young age, he had his record of 350 career winners.

Berry will be deeply missed on the Golden Slipper meeting, slated on Saturday. The Unencumbered will now contest with Craig Williams for the $3.5-million race.

Darren Pearce, Australian Turf Club chief executive, stated they are looking forward to pay their homage on Saturday to this leading jockey.

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