French Olympic climbing hopeful Luce Douady, 16, dies after cliff fall

Luce Douady of France competes during the finals of the EYC European Youth Cup Lead on July 8, 2018 in Munich, Germany. (Marco Kost/Getty Images)

A 16-year-old Olympic hopeful for sport climbing’s debut died in a fall Sunday in France.

Luce Douady was a rising star for the French climbing team. She fell from a cliff while out rock climbing with friends on Sunday near Crolles in the Isère department, southeastern France, per a statement by the French Federation of Mountaineering and Climbing (FFME). The area is part of the French Alps.

The FFME said she was a “very promising” athlete and the “future was before her.”

"This terrible news has had a huge impact on her training partners, her coaches and her club, Chambéry Escalade,” the FFME statement read. "But today, the whole federation is in mourning."

Her club described her as a “beautiful person,” via CNN.

"Luce Douady left us yesterday," reads the statement. "She went as she lived, living life to the fullest."

She was a strong candidate to make the French Olympic team for the rescheduled event in Tokyo, which will now take place in July 2021. Sport climbing will make its Olympic debut.

Douady won her first Youth World Championships title last year in Arco in the Youth A Bouldering event. She placed third in the Youth A Lead final.

The International Federation of Sports Climbing honored her with a video on Tuesday.

She made her first appearance in the IFSC Boulder World Cup circuit, debuting in fifth place in Vail, Colorado, in 2019. She finished 20th at the 2019 IFSC Climbing World Championships in Hachioji, Japan.

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