There's a lot to be said about an athlete's passion and talent, such as Mikaela Shiffrin. She will compete in the Winter Olympics in 2022, and as a result, many people are interested in what is going on in her personal life. She has two Olympic gold medals to her name and is a three-time World Cup champion. She's shown what she's capable of as an alpinist.
While the public focuses on Mikaela for her skiing prowess and achievements, she just experienced a personal tragedy in her family life with the death of her father. Here's what you should know about her father and his death.
Who was Mikaela Shiffrin's Dad?
Mikaela's father, Jeff Shiffrin, was a crucial figure in her early life and her stellar skiing career. Her parents actually met and fell in love while skiing on snow-covered hills. Is it possible that Mikaela inherited their love of beautiful mountaintops and glorious ski trails? It's very possible!
Jeff was a 31-year-old physician when he met Mikaela's mother, Eileen, according to Women's Health. At the time, she was a 25-year-old ICU nurse. They had a great time together and would vacation together in areas like Aspen.
Their desire to spend time in icy locations had a significant impact on how they raised their children. They encouraged Michaela and her brother Taylor to appreciate nature when they were both quite little. It clearly stuck!
What Was Jeff Shiffrin's Cause of Death?
Mikaela's father died in 2020 at the age of 65, after spending several years supporting and encouraging her life and career as a professional skier. His demise was unfortunate; he died of a head injury after falling down on February 2, that year.
Eileen described her grief process to the Aspen Sojourner as “like getting a torpedo in the head and gut, over and over, for months on end.”
She went on to say, “We learned quickly that people have their crosses to bear, and they aren't everyone else's crosses; they're the ones we have to bear ourselves; you learn to suffer in silence.”
In his honor, the family established the Jeff Shiffrin Athlete Resiliency Fund.
Mikaela took a break from skiing to mourn. There was speculation that she might never return to the sport. “She couldn't even get out of bed,” her mother said, according to NBC. “She was so devastated.”
Her mother and brother urged her to persevere. “It was a selfish moment, like, ‘You can't give up on us.'” “We need you,” Taylor told the publication. “Yes, you need us, but we need you as well, so we have to get back on our feet.” It's exactly what Dad would want. That's how my father would handle things.”