Pat McCormick Cause of Death: Pat McCormick, the first diver to win Olympic gold in both the 3-meter and 10-meter events at consecutive Games, passed away on March 7 at an assisted-living center in Santa Ana, California. She was 92.
The family announced her death and revealed that she had been struggling with dementia.
Pat McCormick Cause of Death: Obituary, Funeral
Born Patricia Joan Keller on May 12, 1930, in Seal Beach, California, McCormick was known for executing dives that were not allowed in competition while practicing off a bridge as a youngster. She won 26 national titles from 1946 to 1956, the second-most ever among American women. She was undefeated at national championship meets in 1951 and 1954, winning all 10 available titles for women in those two years.
McCormick won gold on the platform and silver on the 3-meter at the 1951 Pan American Games. She followed that up with gold on both events at the 1955 games. In 1952, she won the springboard and platform events at the Helsinki Olympics. She accomplished the same feat again four years later at the Games in Melbourne, Australia.
After her Olympic career ended, McCormick did diving tours and modeled for Catalina swimwear. She appeared on the game shows “To Tell the Truth” and “You Bet Your Life” in the 1950s and was later inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
McCormick’s daughter, Kelly Robertson, also competed in diving, and won a silver medal on the springboard in 1984 and a bronze medal in the same event in 1988. In 1984, Greg Louganis equaled McCormick’s accomplishment when he won the 3-meter and 10-meter titles at the Los Angeles Olympics. He won both events again in 1988 at Seoul.
In a 1987 interview with the Los Angeles Times, McCormick spoke candidly about the depression felt by many athletes after they have achieved their highest aspirations. She explained that many athletes have never had a conversation in their lives that did not relate to their sport. They become so accustomed to coaches and instructions that when they no longer have them, they feel lost and overwhelmed.
McCormick advised athletes to set new goals after their careers end, such as traveling or learning a new skill. She attended Long Beach State College, traveled around the world, bodysurfed, competed in horse jumping, and earned a pilot’s license. She also served on the organizing committee for the 1984 Los Angeles Games and started the Pat McCormick Educational Foundation in 2010.
In addition to her son and daughter, McCormick is survived by six grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Her marriage to Glenn McCormick, a commercial pilot and diving coach, ended in divorce.