Dianne Durham Wiki
Dianne Durham Biography
Dianne Durham, who was the first black woman to be the United States national gymnastics champion. Durham was the first national champion in the United States trained by the famous Bela Karolyi, according to ESPN.
She was especially regarded as a powerful jumper, the site reports, and was a teammate of Mary Lou Retton.
“What she did was open the door and say that any young woman, not any young white woman, can win and be great in this sport,” Paul Ziert, editor of International Gymnast magazine, told ESPN of Durham’s accomplishments. , which paved the way for the successes of other black gymnasts, such as Simone Biles.
An ankle injury cost her the Olympic trials and she was Retton’s most formidable competitor. In later years, she and her husband ran Skyline Gymnastics in Chicago, according to Gymn-forum.net.
Durham was born in Gary, Indiana.
According to Encyclopedia.com, the ankle injury interrupted a promising career, but not after many accomplishments. “One of America’s best gymnasts, she started taking gymnastics at a local Y when she was four years old,” the site reported.
She became an elite youth champion, won a silver at the McDonald’s International Championships, and then went on to win the national gymnastics competition, earning gold in all but uneven bars, according to Encyclopedia.com.
Dianne Durham Age
Dianne Durham was 52 years old.
Cause of death
Dianne Durham, who was the first black woman to be a USA Gymnastics national champion, died in Chicago, Illinois at the age of 52, according to USA Gymnastics.
Durham died Feb. 4 in Chicago after an undisclosed “brief illness,” and her husband also confirmed her death, according to NBC Chicago.
“I think between her and Mary Lou Retton, they felt they introduced more of a power gymnastics,” Durham’s husband, Tom Drahozal, told NBC Chicago. â € œDianne was also a pioneer of black gymnasts … She paved the way for others.â €
“She passed peacefully,” Drahozal told ESPN. â € œShe was the love of my life and everything I could have asked for. She was as beautiful a person outside of gymnastics as she was within sport. ”
According to UPI, she died in a Chicago hospital with her husband and her sister by her side.
In a statement, USA Gymnastics wrote: “We are deeply saddened to share the passing of gymnastics icon Dianne Durham on February 4. Dianne dominated the 1983 national championships, capturing the full title en route to four golds (balance beam, exercise floor and vault) and one silver (uneven bars). In doing so, she became the first black gymnast to hold the title of United States overall champion. ”
Tributes flowed for Dianne Durham when news of her death spread. These are some of the answers:
â € œNoooooo. I LOVED Dianne Durham… I’m a huge gymnastics enthusiast and I’m exactly the same age as Dianne. I saw her compete live in the 80s. What a terrible loss. RIP.â €
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â € ˜I am heartbroken. Dianne was a bright light, a trailblazer. A sweet soul, ”wrote journalist Felicia Middlebrooks. A few hours before Durham’s death, she wrote: “Asking for prayers for Dianne Durham, who paved the way for today’s best black Olympic gymnasts and trained by Bela Karolyi. She was the first elite gymnast of the 1980s and was born in Gary, IND. I used to be her babysitter. She is very ill, but struggling.
A petition was started for her to be inducted into the gymnastics hall of fame.
â € œI am not remotely qualified to say anything of truth about Dianne Durham’s passing, but the eloquence and intensity of what has been written and said about her today is striking, and speaks to the legacy of a remarkable athlete who has changed. sport for many after her, ”wrote another.
Another woman wrote simply: “Trailblazer. Rest in peace # DianneDurham.â €
“We are heartbroken to learn of Dianne’s passing,” Li Li Leung, USA Gymnastics chief executive officer, said in the statement. “As an icon and a pioneer in our sport, Dianne opened the doors to generations of gymnasts who followed her, and her legacy continues every day in gyms across the country. Our thoughts are with her friends and family during this difficult time. ”