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Suni Lee Overcomes Major Medical Issue to Compete in Paris Olympics

Photo from Suni Lee’s Instagram

Suni Lee Overcomes Major Medical Issue to Compete in Paris Olympics

By Movieguide® Contributor

Olympic gymnast Suni Lee is set to compete in the 2024 Olympics after overcoming a serious health struggle.

The future looked uncertain this past year for the Tokyo Olympics champion.

In February 2023, she suddenly developed swelling throughout her body that would not go away. She sought help from doctors, and after multiple tests that yielded no answers, she had a urine test and kidney biopsy which revealed the disease.

“I have been dealing with a non-gymnastics health related issue involving my kidneys. For my safety, the medical team did not clear me to train and compete over the last few weeks,” she announced on X in 2023 in light of the news. “I am blessed and thankful to be working with the best specialized medical team to treat and manage my diagnosis. My focus at this time is my health and recovery.”

In an interview with TODAY’s Hoda Kotb, Lee shared details of how the health news changed her life.

“There were so many times where I thought about quitting and just giving up because I was so sick, and it was just so hard to stay motivated, watching everybody get better, and I’m just like I can’t even get back into the gym and constantly doubting myself,” she said. “But once I had those people around me who lifted me up and supported me and just made sure that I was good, I knew that this is something that I wanted.”

Lee just landed a spot on the Olympic team this past weekend, a milestone she wasn’t sure she’d achieve again.

“We didn’t think I would be here. So getting through all of those events and…everything that we had to go through this week to get to where we are right now, it was just such a hard, incredible journey,” she said.

On Monday, Team USA shared an emotional video of Lee as she was named part of the Olympic team.

“A year ago, I didn’t even think this was possible,” she told the crowd as she broke down in tears. The entire crowd began cheering her on.

This year’s Summer Olympics will take place July 26 through August 11.

Movieguide® previously reported on the Olympic gymnastics team:

Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles and her fellow USA gymnastics team are ready for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Biles and her teammates — Suni Lee, Jordan Chiles, Jade Carey and Hezly Rivera — joined TODAY’s Hoda Kotb to discuss their goals and aspirations ahead of the big event.

“Deja vu, but also I feel like a little bit of a redemption tour,” Biles told Kotb. “In Tokyo, we all didn’t have our best performances, so we’re excited to go out there and kill it.”

Kotb alluded to the fact that sometimes the Olympic Trials are tougher than the actual Olympics.

“Because of the depth that the U.S. has. It’s so incredible, so we’re all fighting for basically the same position,” Biles explained. “But that’s what makes Team USA Team USA. We have grit, we have power, we have grace. We kind of have everything. So [we’re] just fighting for that spot.”

Chiles chimed in, “Tokyo was a really tough time for a majority of us, and knowing that this is kind of like redemption, and struggles are struggles, but also roads are roads as well, and going down that right road just made it seem a lot better, so that emotion was just like, ‘I’m here! I won! This is crazy, wow!’”


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