The body of Nodar Kumaritashvili, the Georgian luger who died at an Olympics training run in Vancouver last Friday, arrived in his home country Wednesday. (WARNING: Link contains extremely disturbing images.) The AP has more of the sad details:
The luger's mother, Dodo Kharazishvili, became so upset she had to be held up by the arms of relatives. An ambulance team was called to help her. The casket was taken to the family home, located on a street that local authorities have renamed in the athlete's honor. Hundreds of mourners gathered there, and many struggled to contain their own tears.
Among the mourners was Levan Gureshidze, a fellow Olympic luger who grew up and trained with Kumaritashvili but withdrew from the Olympics after his friend's death. He said he could not bear to compete after the accident that took his teammate's life.
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As friends and family mourn Kumaritashvili's passing, additional revelations continue to emerge. The 21-year-old reportedly told his father that he was terrified of the Vancouver luge track just days before he died. He also predicted that he would "either win or die" at the Winter Olympics.
While the Opening Ceremony last Friday night was dedicated to the Georgian and a memorial was held for him in Vancouver, the Wall Street Journal describes a "series of decisions designed to make the icy track a commercial success after the Games but that left it faster, and ultimately more dangerous, than any competitive track before."
Scroll down for pictures from his wake in Georgia.
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