29-Year-Old U.S. Olympic Fencer Kamara James Passes Away
USA Fencing President Donald Anthony has confirmed the passing of Olympic Fencer Kamara James, who represented Team USA at just 19 years old in the 2004 Olympics. The announcement was made Tuesday via the team’s official website and social media accounts; however, it remains unclear when she died.
“Kamara James was one of the brightest, precocious, self-assured young people I ever met. From her time as a very young fencer at the Peter Westbrook Foundation to her years at Princeton as an accomplished Olympian she remained warm, caring and confident,” Donald expressed in a statement. “Kamara’s untimely passing leaves our fencing community very saddened and her spirit, charm and wit will be dearly missed.”
Kamara was a native of Kingston, Jamaica, moving to Queens, NY at 10 years old. Despite her success in the fencing world, according to Fencing.net, mental illness proved to be one of her more aggressive opponents.
“Unfortunately, mental illness proved Kamara’s most unrelenting adversary. Still, just prior to her death, she had resumed a stable drug regimen, was living comfortably and had begun thinking about the future.”
The 29-year-old’s cause of death has not been made public; however, we do know that she passed away in Modesto, California. Plans for a memorial service honoring the athlete have not yet been announced.