A day after suspension, figure skating champion John Coughlin has died at 33

john coughlinUS figure skating pair Caydee Denney and John Coughlin speak with reporters during a news conference in Park City, Utah.Rick Bowmer, File/AP

  • John Coughlin, a two-time US pairs champion recently suspended from figure skating, has died at the age of 33.
  • His sister said in a Facebook post that he had taken his own life, but authorities had not revealed any further details.
  • Coughlin had been barred from all official activities as part of a recent suspension for unspecified conduct.

John Coughlin, a two-time US pairs champion recently suspended from figure skating, has died. He was 33.

US Figure Skating released a statement Saturday and cited his sister, Angela Laune. The sister said in a Facebook post that her "wonderful, strong, amazingly compassionate brother John Coughlin took his own life. ... I have no words." There were no further details.

Coughlin received an interim suspension from the US Center for SafeSport and USFS on Thursday for unspecified conduct the day before his death was reported. He was barred from any activities sanctioned by the skating body or the US Olympic Committee.

The center is an Olympic Committee agency that oversees sexual misconduct and other abuse allegations that are reported to its affiliated agencies.

USA Today first reported the death in Kansas City, Missouri. Police there did not immediately respond to email and phone messages from The Associated Press.

Coughlin won national pairs championships with two partners. He teamed with Caitlin Yankowskas in 2011 and with Caydee Denney the next year.

The International Skating Union said in a statement the organization was "shocked and saddened by the unexpected passing of John Coughlin, Chair of the ISU Athletes Commission and member of the ISU Single & Pair Skating Technical Committee. In the name of the ISU family, we herewith want to share our heartfelt condolences and kindest thoughts with John's family and friends in this time of sorrow."

Olympic figure skater Johnny Weir tweeted about Coughlin Saturday morning saying, "John Coughlin was a person who made things fun. He was a person who was talented, had an incredible laugh & would go out of his way to cheer someone up. His kindness is something I'll never forget and his light will be missed. My prayers are with his family & friends.">

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