How Did Tori Bowie Die? US Track and Field Star and 2016 Rio Olympic Gold Medalist Dies Aged 32 in Florida

Bowie qualified for the US Olympic Team for the 2016 Olympics in Rio after securing the bronze medal at the 2015 World Championships.

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American sprinter and Olympic gold medalist Tori Bowie has died aged at the age of 32. The tragic news was confirmed by her representatives, Icon Management, in a statement on social media. Tributes have been pouring in from the world of athletics since the moment news of Bowie's unexpected death broke.

Bowie won four gold medals at the 2016 Rio Olympics in the 4x100-meter relay, plus 100-meter silver, and 200-meter bronze. She also won the 100-meter world championship and the relay gold the following year in London at the World Championships. The cause of Bowie's death has not yet been released by her family.

Sudden and Unexpected

Tori Bowie
Tori Bowie Twitter

Bowie's management company confirmed her death in a statement that read. "We're devastated to share the very sad news that Tori Bowie has passed away. We've lost a client, dear friend, daughter and sister. Tori was a champion...a beacon of light that shined so bright! We're truly heartbroken and our prayers are with the family and friends."

The cause of Bowie's death was not revealed or released in the statement. TMZ reported that she was found dead in Florida on Tuesday.

As the Bowie family struggled to come to terms with such a sudden loss of life, the track and field community started to flood them with condolences. USA Track and Field said Bowie's "impact on the sport is immeasurable", adding she will be "greatly missed".

In a post on Instagram, World Athletics said it was "deeply saddened" by her death.

Tori Bowie
Tori Bowie Twitter

Noah Lyles, a three-time world champion and US record holder, led the tributes to Bowie.

"I can't believe this," he tweeted in response to a statement from her management company.

"I had just heard word of her going to be with her sister back home and now this. This breaks my heart to hear and I will keep the family in my prayers."

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, an Olympic gold medalist from Jamaica who competed against Bowie, also paid respect, writing, "My heart breaks for the family of Tori Bowie. A great competitor and source of light. Your energy and smile will always be with me. Rest in peace."

Kenyan Olympian javelin thrower Julius Yego tweeted, "So devastating and shocking to learn of the passing on of Tori Bowie. The world of athletics have lost a great champion and patriot of the sport, rest in peace Tori. Condolences to the greater family of Tori Bowie, together in prayers."

Gone too Soon

Bowie qualified for the US Olympic Team for the 2016 Olympics in Rio after securing the bronze medal at the 2015 World Championships. There, she met the requirements to compete for Team USA in the 100-, 200-, and 4x100-meter relay finals.

Tori Bowie
Tori Bowie Twitter

She won silver, clocking a time of 10.83 to Jamaica's Elaine Thompson, who won gold in the 100-meter dash with a 10.71. In the 200-meter race, Thompson again took first place, Dafne Schippers of Holland took second, and Bowie came in third.

Bowie, however, assisted Team USA in keeping the gold in the 4x100m relay by running the anchor leg and outlasting Jamaica's Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce alongside fellow sprinters English Gardner, Allyson Felix, and Tianna Bartoletta.

A year later, she won two gold medals in the 2017 World Athletics Championships in London, one in the 4x100m relay and the other in the 100 meters.

Tori Bowie
Tori Bowie Twitter

Bowie qualified for the 100-meter semifinals at the 2019 World Championships in Qatar, although she did not run after winning her heat. She did not compete on the women's 4x100m team, with the US team winning bronze with a new set of runners -- Dezerea Bryant, Teahna Daniels, Morolake Akinosun, and Kiara Parker.

her final Instagram post from October 2019 featured a video of her competing in the long jump at that same event. The video was captioned: "What a journey what a journey... finishing 4th in the world considering I've been away from it for 5 years is a huge accomplishment for me!

Tori Bowie
Tori Bowie Twitter

"Let's just say I'm looking forward to Tokyo! To everyone chasing their dreams out there keep the courage and determination! I know I will."

However, according to data from the 2020 US Olympic Team Trials, Bowie didn't take part in the 100-, 200-, or long-jump qualifying events.

Bowie hadn't participated in a race since June 4 of last year, when she finished fifth in a 200-meter event in Florida, according to Runners World.

This article was first published on May 3, 2023