US Olympic Cyclist Kelly Catlin Dead at 23

Kelly Catlin, the US Olympic track cyclist, was found dead in her campus dorm at Stanford University at the age of 23.

The Tragedy

Olympic track cyclist Kelly Catlin, who helped the U.S. women’s pursuit team win the silver medal at the Rio de Janeiro Games in 2016, died Friday at her home in California.

This tragedy was an abrupt end of the 23-year-old accolade live and her family was devastated while announcing that she took her own life.

“There isn’t a minute that goes by that we don’t think of her and think of the wonderful life she could have lived,” her father said in a statement. “There isn’t a second in which we wouldn’t freely give our lives in exchange for hers. The hurt is unbelievable.”

Mike Carlin referred to her as a warrior princess, saying that “part of her undoing was her personal code. She gave 110 per cent to whatever she was doing.”

She was also pursuing a graduate degree in computational and mathematical engineering. Back in February, Catlin described the struggle to balance school and cycling. She described retaking a three-hour-long final exam just after stepping out of the final round of team pursuit as the most difficult thing she’d ever done.

She simply couldn’t balance everything she had on her plate and saw suicide as her only escape.

The Cycling

Her brother Colin Catlin pushed her into cycling which was a hobby at first but when she started winning, everything changed.

He described her as someone who she liked winning things a lot.  She suffered two crashes, one in which she broke her arm in October 2018 and another in which she sustained a concussion in December 2018, seemed to take away the control from Catlin.

She first attempted suicide in January and had become a complete stranger to her family after that. She couldn’t fulfil anything in front of her and has become indifferent towards everything around her. Life became meaningless and the depression was just too strong.

“Waves of despair come over us,” her father, Mark Catlin, said. “She promised us she wasn’t going to kill herself.”

USA Cycling chief executive Rob DeMartini said in a statement that the entire cycling community is mourning this gigantic loss. She was more than an athlete to them, she was a part of the family.

“We are offering continuous support to Kelly’s teammates, coaches and staff. We also encourage all those who knew Kelly to support each other through the grieving.”


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