But having missed out on selection for American teams at the Olympics and World Championships, Torrence switched allegiances to Peru, his mother's country, in 2016 and reached the Olympic final of the 5,000m in Rio.
According to the Arizona Republic, citing Scottsdale police, Torrence's body was found at the bottom of a pool in an apartment complex. Torrence was pronounced dead at the scene.
After news of his death spread, there has been an outpour of love for Torrence from the running community.
"Today we lost an awesome athlete and an even greater friend", fellow runner Kyle Merber tweeted Monday night.More news: All the hidden messages in Taylor Swift's new music video
USA Track & Field tweeted, "Devastating news".
The organisers of next week's Hoka One One Long Island Mile, a race Torrence won in 2015 and 2016, have said they will rename it in his honour.
A native of California, Torrence won silver for the U.S. at the World Relay Championships in 2014 and finished second at the Pan American Games in 2015. After helping a US team set an indoor world record in the 4x800 meter, Torrence set a new USA indoor record in the 1,000-meter with a time of 2:16.76.
Recently Torrence left his home in California and had been training in Arizona for some weeks, according to the police. He reportedly played a role in an anti-doping investigation into a coach who was arrested last summer, and he was outspoken about how his sport should treat athletes who were implicated in doping.