A sumo wrestler from Russia, who was given the title of the World’s Heaviest Boy in 2003 by the Guinness World Records, Dzhambulat Khatokhov, has died at 21 years old.
The sad news was announced on Instagram on Tuesday, December 29, by Betal Gubzhev, who is the President of Sumo and Mas-wrestling Federation in the Kabardino-Balkarian Republic — which is in the North Caucasus in Russia — but the cause of death was not stated.
"The record holder of the Guinness Book of Records, the first sumo wrestler of the Kabardino-Balkarian Republic Dzhambulat Khatokhov has passed away," a translation read. "My condolences to the relatives and friends."
However, Khatokhov reportedly had kidney problems.
Khatokhov garnered media attention as a child when he weighed 75 pounds by the time he was only two. Although he was born an average 6 pounds, he had hit over 28 pounds by his first birthday and began to grow at an exponential rate throughout his childhood. By the time he was 13, he had reached 397 pounds. Not only was Khatokhov heavier than other children, but according to Tass, by the time he was three-and-a-half, he was a head taller than other children his age.
The boy became involved in sumo wrestling at a young age. Last year, Khatokhov shared a childhood throwback of himself lifting a barbell with the caption, "Iron in blood."
Khatokhov was famously on World's Biggest Boy when he was 7 years old and weighed the same as a "baby elephant" — 224 pounds.
Of course, there were serious concerns about his health. Doctors tried to appeal to his mother, Nelya, that her son was seriously unhealthy, but she did not take it seriously. "My child is not ill, he's just unique," she said in the documentary. "If others think otherwise, that's up to them."
"His weight means he has a greatly increased risk of diabetes, cancer and heart disease," Dr. Ian Campbell told Nelya at the time. "As a result of being so heavy so young, his life expectancy is likely to be greatly reduced."
While there were concerns that Khatokhov had a genetic condition or was given steroids, his mother denied that he was given hormones and believed that her son was just as God made him.
We’re thinking of Khatokhow’s family during this difficult time.