Jul 16, 2013, 8:04 PM EDT
Bill Johnson, the 1984 Olympic gold medalist in the men’s downhill, has “shut himself down,” his mother told 3 Wire Sports.
“He has no quality of life from this point on and never will,” DB Johnson-Cooper said.
In a note sent Sunday to family and friends, DB wrote, “The doctor was very frank with him and Bill knew exactly what he wanted. He shed a few tears, which was a very hard thing to see.”
On the telephone Tuesday, she said, “He has no physical use of any part of his body. He has difficulty even raising his head. His mind is still very keen but his body has literally shut down.”
Johnson, 53, was hospitalized June 29 and spent two weeks in intensive care while doctors unsuccessfully attempted to find the source of an infection that attacked all of his major organs, according to the U.S. Ski Team.
Johnson predicted he would win the downhill at the 1984 Sarajevo Winter Games and followed through, becoming the first American man to wear Olympic Alpine gold.
The man with the “Ski To Die” tattoo was left off the 1988 Olympic team, lost his son to drowning in 1992, and his marriage ended in 1999.
Johnson attempted a comeback prior to the 2002 Olympics but a horrible skiing crash left him in a temporary coma and with severe brain injuries. In 2010, he suffered a major stroke.
- A recent history of U.S. Olympic gymnastics comebacks 0
- Meryl Davis, Charlie White won’t compete next season 1
- Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman competitive with U.S. teammates in comeback 0
- Javier Fernandez wins upset World Championship; top American fourth 0
- Elizaveta Tuktamysheva wins World Championship; U.S. just misses medals 0
- How to watch Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman’s comeback gymnastics meet 0
- Yuzuru Hanyu tops World Championships short program; Jason Brown leads Americans 0
- Emotional Bode Miller medals in race that mattered most (61)
- Russian women kissing after relay victory at World Championships causes stir (60)
- IOC drops wrestling from 2020 Olympics (47)
- South Korea filing official complaint over Yuna Kim’s Olympic silver (39)
- Zola Budd, 47, dominates college runners in 5K (33)