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12 Aug 2012

Gymnast Gabby Douglas’ mom filed for bankruptcy

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August 12, 2012 Category: Sports Posted by:

associated press


NORFOLK, Virginia–Court records show that the mother of Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas filed for bankruptcy earlier this year in Virginia.


The filing was first reported by TMZ, a day after it was revealed that the parents of fellow U.S. Olympian Ryan Lochte were facing foreclosure in Florida.


Documents filed in January in Virginia show Douglas’ mother, Natalie Hawkins, filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which allows people to reorganize their finances and pay down debt over several years.


Douglas has been one of the most popular athletes at the Olympics in London, becoming the first African-American woman to win an all-around gold medal in gymnastics. The 4-foot-11 inch 16-year-old taken home two gold medals so far and has become an international superstar, winning over fans with her smile and the nickname “Flying Squirrel.”


The gymnast’s agent has fielded hundreds of emails from businesses, talk shows and magazines interested in Douglas, and she’s already slated to appear on the cover of a Kelloggs Corn Flakes box. She stands to earn millions of dollars from endorsement deals and other ventures. Douglas has been training for two years in Iowa and hasn’t been home to Virginia Beach since then.


The bankruptcy filings list Hawkins as having assets totaling $163,706, with a townhouse in Virginia Beach and a 2007 Nissan Maxima accounting for the bulk of it. Other possessions include miscellaneous books and clothing valued at $600.


Hawkins also lists roughly $80,000 in debts. The bulk of that is from her mortgage. Other debts include: a $4,300 student loan, about $1,800 in credit card purchases and a $400 medical bill. Hawkins is separated from her husband and lists about $2,500 in income per month, which comes from Social Security disability benefits and child support, according to the documents. Douglas also has three older siblings.


An order issued in March says Hawkins is to pay $400 a month toward her debts over a nearly five-year period. Her attorney declined to comment Sunday in an email.


The bankruptcy filing was the latest report of financial woes associated with an Olympian. CitiMortgage is suing to foreclose on the Florida home owned by Ryan Lochte’s divorced parents, Ileana and Steven. Both have been in London to cheer on their son, who has won two gold medals of his own.

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