Former USA prop killed in street fight
April 29, 2013
Former Natal and USA prop Graham Downes has died after a fight outside his San Diego home in the early hours of Friday morning. He was taken to a nearby hospital but doctors turned off his life-support machine on Monday.
An official statement said he suffered "major head and facial injuries". Higinio Soriano Salgado, 31, an employee of Downes, was initially charged with attempted murder and prosecutors said they now plan to charge him with murder.
"Graham was an exciting and adventurous man who did no less than devour life," his publicist Danielle Gano told The Mercury. "There were no half-measures in his world. Those who knew him socially surely have a memorable story to tell in which he is invariably at the centre."
Downes, 56, was born and raised in Durban and played for the provincial rugby side in the 1980s before emigrating to the USA in 1986. He represented the USA side at the inaugural Rugby World Cup the following year. He founded Graham Downes Architecture in San Diego in 1994 and Gano said he was "revered for his work in revitalising neglected urban areas".
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