Condition most often affects men between ages of 20 and 50.
The Legionaries of Christ released a statement on April 6 regarding the death of their confrere, the young US-born seminarian, Anthony Freeman.
Brother Anthony had just finished spiritual exercises and had served the Easter Sunday Mass presided by Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Square on the day he died.
He was found dead on Easter Monday in the afternoon. He was 29.
According to the statement: “Brother Anthony Freeman, LC, died on the night of April 1-2, at the age of 29, at the International College of Legionaries of Christ in Rome. The death was due to a dilated cardiomyopathy according to the result of the medical examination communicated to the congregation today, Friday, April 6.”
The Mayo Clinic explains that dilated cardiomyopathy might not cause symptoms, but for some people it can be life-threatening.
The statement from the Legionaries also noted that several hours passed before the brother was found.
On April 2, at 11:15 a.m., about 40 brothers from his community, accompanied by the rector, went on a trip in several vehicles to a place near Sorrento to have a few days of rest and relaxation.
- Brother Anthony had agreed with the trip organizer that he would travel on April 2 to Sorrento by train to visit some people before arriving to the place where the community would stay, and then he would call to let the organizer know if he needed to be picked up or would catch up with the rest of the group on his own.
- On April 2, at departure, the brothers noted his absence and the ones in charge assumed he had left by train early as planned. During the trip, one of his companions tried to contact him by phone but got no reply. When they stopped to eat, he told the rector that it was strange that Brother Anthony did not respond, and the rector told him to send a message to the superior in Rome to ask if they had any news of him.
- Between 4:00 and 4:30 p.m., still on April 2, they went to look for him in his room and found him dead. They proceeded to call the competent authorities so that they could initiate the pertinent investigation that would clarify the situation.
Brother Anthony was active on Facebook and Instagram with his “Catholic Life Coach” pages. He also had a web site, branthonyfreeman.com, and had a book released in January. He was set to be ordained a deacon this year in Houston.