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'Heartbroken' Humphries thanks Canada for support after BCS release

Last Updated Sep 29, 2019 at 5:20 pm EST

Canadian Olympic athlete Kaillie Humphries poses for a photo at the Olympic Summit in Calgary, Alta., Saturday, June 3, 2017. Bobsleigh Canada Skeleton has confirmed that former Olympian Kaillie Humphries filed a harassment complaint with the organization. Humphries stepped away from competition in October before the World Cup season began. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Summary

Humphries says she is 'heartbroken' and would've 'loved' to keep competing for Canada


Humphries says other athletes have experienced similar issues in amateur sports, BCS


CALGARY –  Kaillie Humphries has written Canadians a thank-you note a day after being released from the Bobsleigh Canada Skeleton (BCS) program.

The Olympic champion has had a tense relationship with the organization which oversees her sport over, first taking a hiatus a year ago and then filing a harassment claim. BCS said that claim was forwarded to an independent investigator but no wrongdoing was found.

Humphries filed a lawsuit and a court injunction to be released from Team Canada in order to try out for a spot on the U.S. team. A Calgary judge denied that injunction last week.

Saturday, BCS announced it would be granting Humphries’ request to be released.

READ MORE: BCS releases Kaillie Humphries allowing her to try out for US team

Sunday, the 34-year-old hometown hero said she didn’t know how to feel.

“While I am very happy this purgatory has ended after over a year of trying to get my concerns and the concerns of other athletes taken seriously, I am also very sad to not compete under my flag any longer,” reads a statement from the athlete on social media.

“Heartbroken, actually.”

She says no words will be able to express her gratitude and deep love for her fellow Canadians and all the people who supported her along her way.

“Some of my greatest memories and triumphs have been standing on top of the podium, singing the words to our national anthem,” she writes. “The support of this nation is not lost on me.”

Humphries also goes on to say there are a number of other athletes under BCS who are no longer competing as a result of similar experiences and points to a culture of abuse and harassment in amateur sports.

RELATED: Bobsled athlete not shocked by Humphries allegations

“I feel the biggest issue is safety in amateur sports for athletes, being able to compete free from abuse and harassment. The need to be able to speak up without fear of retribution within the system or the public eye when things aren’t right is so desperately important,” she said.

“While I am heartbroken that I felt my only available option for a safe environment was tor refrain from competition and ultimately leave, others have more grave consequences when facing the reality of their own situations.”

She ends her emotional letter to Canada wishing other athletes the best in their endeavours and asking those who may be upset with her actions to try to understand it’s been a difficult process.

“I would have loved to continue to compete for Canada.”