Yeah, he did pass away.
Wound up hanging out with the wrong crowd. Sucks, he was from my neighborhood. If he had had stuck with it he could have been VERY good.
Im the one that got he and his father into racing. I still remember when i lent him my first BMX bike (Schwinn Predator) to go and race and they brought it back with a cracked frame..ha ha.
Had a friend weld it, i still have that thing..