Champion figure skater from Kansas City found dead

SAN JOSE, CA - JANUARY 29: Caydee Denney and John Coughlin celebrate after getting their score for the pairs free skate during the 2012 U.S. Figure Skating Championships at HP Pavilion on January 29, 2012 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Jeff Chiu-Pool/Getty Images)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A two-time champion in U.S. pairs figure skating from Kansas City was found dead on Friday. John Coughlin, 33, took his own life.

His sister made a post on Facebook late Friday night saying: “My wonderful, strong, amazingly compassionate brother John Coughlin took his own life earlier today. I have no words. I love you John. Always Always Brother Bear…”

In pairs skating he won the U.S. championship in 2011 with partner Caitlin Yankowskas. In 2012 he won another U.S. championship with Caydee Denney.

U.S. Figure Skating issued this statement on Saturday:

“We are stunned at the news of the death of two-time U.S. pairs champion John Coughlin. Our heartfelt and deepest sympathies are with his father Mike, sister Angela and the rest of his family. Out of respect to the family, U.S. Figure Skating will have no further comment until a later time.”

Late in December of 2018, SafeSport restricted Coughlin’s participation in the sport for a pending investigation. USA Today reports that earlier this week it completely barred him from any kind of participation in skating with U.S. Figure Skating or the U.S. Olympic Committee. Coughlin was quoted in the newspaper as saying allegations against him were unfounded.

SafeSport investigates matters related to sexual misconduct, physical misconduct, emotional misconduct, bullying, threats and harassment, hazing and willfully tolerating misconduct.

If you are having suicidal thoughts, we urge you to get help immediately.

Go to a hospital, call 911 or call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.

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