It is with great sadness that Full Tilt Team Member Jeret “Speedy” Peterson, a three-time Olympic aerialist who won a silver medal at the 2010 Vancouver games, died Monday night the 25th of July in what Utah police believe was an act of suicide. Peterson 29, had gone through some difficult experiences and publicly battled alcohol addiction and depression. Despite this personal battle, Jeret lived life with gusto: with his heart on his sleeve and skied as if it was his last jump.
“His care and concern for others made him the amazing person he was and I hope to be able to carry on that legacy wherever I go,” fellow US Olympic aerialist and Full Tilt skier Emily Cook said.
Peterson picked up the nickname Speedy, for Speed Racer, as an 11 year old training in Lake Placid, New York. In 2004, he pioneered a complicated, five-rotation jump called the Hurricane, the same maneuver that would later net him the Olympic silver in Vancouver. Peterson was the victim of sexual abuse as a child, and had witnessed a close friend commit suicide in 2005.
Despite incredibly tough setbacks in life, Jeret still managed to become a shining light in not just the aerial but the entire ski community. His passion for the sport and guts to throw difficult tricks inspired us all to push ourselves beyond what we thought was possible. Even if it meant missing a high risk trick and not winning, it was still worth it in Speedy’s eyes.
“Could you imagine if I decided to go step down to an easier trick and I was only giving 90 percent and I ended up second? I couldn’t live with that. I would definitely have to know that when I’m done, medal around my neck or not, that I gave everything I had. If everything clicks, I’d just beat everybody by a mile, and that’s what I’m looking for.”
Read more at CNN
Visit and Donate thespeedyfoundation.org in helping others with Mental Health
Take a moment to watch this tribute to Speedy