Autopsy determines cause of volleyball player’s death


An autopsy determined today that the death of professional volleyball player and Olympian Michael Whitmarsh in Solana Beach was a suicide.

The 46-year-old San Diego resident was found dead of carbon monoxide poisoning from car exhaust in the garage of a friend’s Shoemaker Lane home about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday morning, according to the county Medical Examiner’s Office.

Whitmarsh and former SDSU basketball player Mike Dodd won the silver medal in the men’s inaugural beach volleyball tournament at the 1996 Summer Olympics.

The 6-foot-7-inch Whitmarsh also played basketball for the University of San Diego and led the team to the NCAA tournament in 1984. As a volleyball player, he won 29 titles and more than $1.5 million.

He is survived by his wife, Cindy, and two daughters.