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Chess World Mourns The Loss of Magnus Carlsen's Mother

Sigrun Øen, a chemical engineer, in Oslo. Sigrun died peacefully on Tuesday at the age of 61 after a long illness, surrounded by her family. She leaves behind her husband Henrik, her son Magnus, and her daughters Ingrid, Ellen, and Signe.

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Aashish Verma

7/11/20242 min read

Magnus Carlsen Withdraws from Grand Chess Tour Due to Family Tragedy

In an unexpected turn of events, World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen has withdrawn from the Superunited Rapid & Blitz Croatia tournament in Zagreb due to a family emergency. Levon Aronian will be taking his place. The third stage of the Grand Chess Tour 2024 is set to begin on Wednesday with the blitz tournament.

Tragic Loss

The reason for Carlsen's withdrawal is the passing of his mother, Sigrun Øen, a chemical engineer, in Oslo. Sigrun died peacefully on Tuesday at the age of 61 after a long illness, surrounded by her family. She leaves behind her husband Henrik, her son Magnus, and her daughters Ingrid, Ellen, and Signe.

Ellen Carlsen shared the heartbreaking news on Facebook, linking to a memorial page. She wrote, “My dear, good mother and the children’s grandmother passed away far too soon. The loss is great.”

Henrik Carlsen also expressed his grief on the memorial page, writing, “Farewell my dear irreplaceable Sigrun. Thank you for everything for more than 41 years.”

Community Support

The chess community has rallied around Magnus Carlsen and his family during this difficult time. Many prominent figures in the chess world expressed their condolences on social media.

Hikaru Nakamura tweeted:

“My deepest condolences @MagnusCarlsen on your tragic loss. May her memory be a blessing.”

Viswanathan Anand shared his thoughts:

“Really sad to hear the news. My sincere condolences to @MagnusCarlsen, Henrik and the entire Carlsen family to find strength at this difficult moment.”

Tarjei J. Svensen also offered his sympathies:

“Sigrun Øen, Magnus Carlsen's mother, has passed away. My deepest condolences to the whole family.”

Teimour Radjabov added:

“My deepest condolences to @MagnusCarlsen and his entire family 🙏🙏”

Susan Polgar expressed her sorrow:

“Unfortunately news 😢 Sigrun Øen, Mother of world #1 Magnus Carlsen, just passed away. Our biggest condolences to Magnus and his family! 🕊️”

The passing of Sigrun Øen is a significant loss for the Carlsen family and the chess community. Magnus Carlsen's decision to withdraw from the Grand Chess Tour is understandable as he takes time to be with his family during this difficult period. The thoughts and prayers of the entire chess world are with the Carlsen family.