Mother of US Olympian Raven Saunders has died, family says

Japan 2020

(Credit: WCBD)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – The mother of Olympic silver medalist Raven Saunders has passed away.

Clarissa Saunders, the mother of the Charleston, S.C., shot putter, passed away recently while in Orlando, Fla., her family confirmed to News 2.

Saunders was in Florida attending a watch party for her daughter as she competed in the Tokyo Olympics.

Family members are working to bring Raven Saunders home from Japan. She tweeted earlier this week that she was expected to return to the United States on Thursday.

“My mama was a great woman and will forever live through me. My number one guardian angel. I will always and forever love you,” Saunders said in a tweet Tuesday morning.

Raven Saunders, who has been known to wear an “Incredible Hulk” mask during the Games, won a silver medal on Sunday.

During the photo op at her medals ceremony Sunday night, the 25-year-old stepped off the podium, lifted her arms above her head and formed an “X’ with her wrists.

When asked what that meant, the openly gay athlete explained: ”It’s the intersection of where all people who are oppressed meet.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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