April 13 (UPI) -- Veteran sports photographer Anthony J. Causi has died after contracting the coronavirus. He was 48.
Causi covered New York's professional sports teams for 25 years while working for the New York Post. The Post said he died Sunday at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, N.Y.
Causi posted a photo of himself on Instagram on March 22 while in the hospital. The photo showed the photographer hooked up to medical equipment.
"I never thought I would get something like this," Causi wrote for the caption. "I thought I was indestructible. If I do make it out of here. I promise you this the world's not going to know what hit it."
The Post used a photo of Causi for Monday's back page, which is the cover page for sports. Major League Baseball called Causi "sports photojournalist extraordinaire" in a statement honoring the photographer.
"Anthony Causi was our colleague, our friend, and a brilliant journalist," said Stephen Lynch, editor-in-chief of the Post. "He was, quite simply, one of the best sports photographers in New York City, capturing all the major moments of the past 25 years.
"Soft-spoken, funny, but most of all kind -- he was respected by those he photographed and admired by those with whom he worked. The Post that you read, and the newsroom that we work in, are less colorful today because of his absence. Our hearts go out to his family, and we share their grief."
Causi began at the Post in 1994 as a photo messenger. He became a photo editor before becoming a full-time journalist photographer. Causi chronicled the New York Yankees, New York Mets, New York Giants, New York Jets, New York Knicks, New York Rangers and other teams in more than two decades.
"On behalf of the entire Mets organization, we are deeply saddened to learn of Anthony's passing," Mets Chief Operating Officer Jeff Wilpon said in a statement. "He was a charismatic photographer who brought fans closer to the action with his breathtaking images of the Mets."
Several other sports teams and athletes posted messages in honor of Causi while others donated to a GoFundMe account set up for his family. The account had raised $6,000 by midday Monday.
"My condolences go to the Causi family," Philadelphia Phillies shortstop Didi Gregorius tweeted. "Anthony was a great, funny and awesome guy to talk to and learn from about sports photography. May he rest in peace."
Causi was covering the Mets at their spring training site in Port St. Lucie, Fla., before Major League Baseball canceled games due to the pandemic. He received a positive COVID-19 diagnosis shortly after the MLB season was suspended.
Causi is survived by his wife, Romina, and their children, John, 5, and Mia, 2, as well as his parents, Lucille and John Causi, and sisters Maria Marangelli and Dianna Marotto.