Melanie Coleman, a gymnast attending Southern Connecticut State University, died after falling during practice. She was doing a routine exercise on the uneven bars, passing away on Sunday.
Jay Moran, the athletic director of the university, was able to send out a statement on the incident. He says that currently, their thought and prayers are with Melanie’s family. Also, her teammates and coaches are devastated.
Thomas Alberti, the longtime personal coach of Colemen, says that the incident was a complete accident. Also, it is hard to process the event. According to her family, she was the light and love for them all.
Though deaths in gymnastics are rare, they do happen.
15-year-old Julissa Gomez was paralyzed after an accident on the vault in 1988. Three years later, she succumbed to her injuries.
According to those at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, around 100,000 gymnasts suffer injuries every year. They will fracture their wrists, see damage in their cartilage, as well as tears to their anterior ligament (ACL). UPMC says that over the past 20 years, gymnasts have begun starting the sport at an earlier age. Also, they are performing more difficult stunts.
Gymnast Dies During Routine
20-year-old Melanie Coleman was pursuing a degree in the field of nursing. She was a part-time gymnastics teacher at Alberti’s gym, New Era Gymnastics. Alberti says that he was her coach for ten years and that she was always a leader at his gym. Coleman’s mother, as well as her two older sisters, were gymnasts as well.
According to her coach, she was teaching 2 to 15-year-olds. According to everyone who knew the young woman, she was a joy to be around, and they will all miss her dearly.
A GoFundMe account for the Coleman family was able to raise over $53,000 by early Tuesday morning. The gymnast leaves behind both parents and four siblings.