Olympic gold-medal winning gymnast McKayla Maroney may be famous for her “unimpressed” face, but the bravery she is showing by sharing an allegedly painful experience is “impressive.”
Maroney revealed her story about an incident involving a team doctor that she says occurred when she was just 13-years-old.
— mckayla (@McKaylaMaroney) October 18, 2017
The charges are extremely serious:
“I was molested by Dr. Larry Nassar, the team doctor for the US for the U.S. Women’s National Gymnastics Team, and Olympic Team,” Maroney wrote. “Dr. Nassar told me that I was receiving ‘medically necessary treatment that he had been performing on patients for over 30 years.’ It started when I was 13 years old, at one of my first National Team training camps, in Texas, and it didn’t end until I left the sport.”
“I thought I was going to die that night,” she added.
As Fox News reports, Nassar pleaded guilty to child pornography charges. He is awaiting trial with charges being brought by three separate cases, with nine girls allegedly targeted by the former medical specialist, who has since had his license to practice medicine revoked. Eight of those girls are reported to be gymnasts.
Nassar has been accused by more than 100 women and girls of sexual molestation or assault. It is a harrowing look at a girls’ sports profession that needs special protection from predators like Nassar, who prey on parental and child trust and exploit it for their own sick reasons.
Maroney’s charges come as the fallout from the Harvey Weinstein scandal continues to rock Hollywood to its foundation. It appears that the film industry isn’t the only place in American culture where sexual predators are operating in the shadows.
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