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Kara Eaker’s father says ‘hope is gone’ to gymnast at Olympics in Tokyo after positive COVID test


Kara Eaker

Marijan Murat / image alliance via Getty Kara Eaker

Kara Eaker’s father has lost hope that Team US women’s gymnastics team change will be able to compete in this month’s Olympics in Tokyo.

The U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee announced Monday that “an alternate member of the women’s gymnastics team tested positive for COVID-19,” but would not name Eaker, 18, “out of respect for the individual’s privacy.”

Gymnast’s coach Al Fong later confirmed the positive test to the Associated Press and said she tested positive while in a training camp in Japan. The coach added that the athlete had been fully vaccinated.

“There was hope up to this point, even as a substitute,” Eakers father Mark KSHB told of his daughter’s chance of competition. “Now that the results have come back, the hope is gone.”

Kara Eaker

Kara Eaker

Harry How / Getty Kara Eaker

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Mark expressed that he was “most disappointed” with the gymnast because of how long she had her eyes on competing in the games.

“I feel bad for her, because as I said, she has trained most of her life for this,” he said.

Eaker’s mother Katherine added that she is “incredibly grateful we got her vaccinated” because she is asymptomatic.

“Everyone tells us – all the medical people tell us – it’s to her advantage,” she said of the vaccine. “If there’s anything I could tell everyone: Take this seriously.”

RELATED: Athletes and organizers who have tested positive for COVID at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

Kara Eaker

Kara Eaker

kshb Kara Eaker’s parents Mark and Katherine

The 18-year-old is one of four deputies on Team USA’s women’s gymnastics team. Colleague deputy Leanne Wong, 17, was also placed in quarantine due to possible exposure per. KSHB, although she tested negative.

Eaker is one of 58 reported cases of COVID-19 associated with the pandemic-exposed event, CNN reported.

Of the 58, three athletes who are in the Olympic village have tested positive, according to the Associated Press. These Olympic hopefuls include Czech beach volleyball player Ondřej Perušič and two South African men’s soccer players.

As 11,000 athletes and thousands of support staff are expected to stay in the Olympic Village, President Thomas Bach of the International Olympic Committee has said there is a “zero” risk that athletes will infect Japanese residents with COVID-19. Spectators have recently been banned from participating in the Summer Olympics when Tokyo declared a state of emergency.

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In addition, all Olympians are required to wear face masks inside the athletes’ village, even if they are vaccinated.

Nearly 10,000 of the 80,000 unpaid Olympic volunteers who previously withdrew from the event, many citing COVID-19 concerns. Meanwhile, a recent survey showed that nearly 60 percent of the population of Japan want the Summer Olympics to be canceled by the same reasoning.

To learn more about all the Olympic hopefuls, visit TeamUSA.org. The Tokyo Olympics begin July 23 on NBC.


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