Bode, Morgan Miller hope daughter’s drowning raises awareness

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Bode and Morgan Miller spoke out about their 19-month-old daughter’s drowning to raise awareness for the leading cause of unintentional death for children 1 to 4 years old.

The Millers’ daughter, Emmy, died June 10, one day after paramedics tried unsuccessfully to revive her after the incident at a neighbor’s pool in California.

“It’s an obligation, to some degree,” Bode Miller said in a TODAY interview with Savannah Guthrie. “I think it does, in some way, help to heal, a little bit, that maybe we’re preventing it from happening to somebody else.”

Bode Miller is a six-time Olympic Alpine skiing medalist who covered the PyeongChang Winter Games for NBC. Morgan Miller is a former professional beach volleyball player. They wed in 2012.

“We have the choice to live our days with purpose to make sure that no other parent has to feel what we’re feeling,” Morgan Miller said.

On June 9, Morgan was with her kids at a neighbor’s house when she noticed she could not hear Emmy.

“All of a sudden it was just too quiet for me,” she said. “I stood up, and I turned, I walked right to where the boys were and I said, where’s Emmy? Before [son] Nate could respond, I turned around, and the door that leads to the backyard, that was closed, had this tiny sliver of light coming through the side. And my heart sank. I opened the door, and she was floating in the pool. I ran, and I jumped in.”

Morgan pulled Emmy out of the water and started CPR while a neighbor called 911. Bode was at a softball game and received a phone call, listening as paramedics continued trying to revive Emmy in an ambulance.

“In shock,” he said. Emmy died the following the day at an Orange County hospital.

“There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t pray for the opportunity to go back to that day and make it different, but now we have this opportunity to make other parents’ days different,” Morgan said. “I want to remember her as my baby girl. She brought so much to our lives, and now she’s helping us bring so much to everybody else’s lives.”

Bode Miller: Mikaela Shiffrin can win 5 medals, may be best ever already

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Bode Miller said he believes Mikaela Shiffrin has “an outside shot” at five medals in PyeongChang and could already be the greatest Alpine skier ever at age 22, according to Reuters.

“I think she’s maybe the best ski racer I’ve ever seen, male or female,” the NBC Olympics analyst Miller said, according to the report. “She’s so balanced, dynamic, intense and focused, so for me, I think she’s got a chance in any event she skis in.

 “I would say it’s likely she wins two [Olympic] golds. I would say an outside shot at five medals, and I think probably, at her best, maybe three or four of them are golds.”

The praise likely means plenty to Shiffrin, who idolizes the retired Miller. Shiffrin watched his movie, “Flying Downhill,” hundreds of times as a kid, according to the Denver Post.

Shiffrin already has more World Cup wins than Miller — 38 to 33 — and would match Miller’s U.S. Olympic skiing record of six medals if she gets five in PyeongChang.

The record for Alpine medals at one Olympics is four, set by Croatian Janica Kostelic in 2002.

Shiffrin, who won a gold medal in Sochi as the youngest Olympic slalom champion, has blossomed into an all-event skier in the last two years.

She leads this season’s World Cup standings in the slalom and downhill, plus ranks second in the giant slalom, having won seven of her 14 starts across all disciplines.

The women haven’t raced a super combined yet this season, but given that event is a mix of slalom and downhill, she would be a favorite there.

Shiffrin’s plan has been to race the slalom, giant slalom, super-G and super combined in PyeongChang. She could add the downhill and the team event, which come late in the Olympic schedule.

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Bode Miller joins NBC Olympics, explains end of ski racing career

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Bode Miller will head to PyeongChang as an Alpine skiing analyst for NBC Olympics, rather than bid to make a sixth Olympic team at age 40.

Miller, the most decorated U.S. Olympic skier with six medals, called his decision not to race again “easy.” He made it months ago. Nothing changed in his life that made him rethink it.

“It had kind of been a long time coming,” said Miller, who last raced at the February 2015 World Championships, severing a hamstring tendon in a super-G crash (video here). “But just with my kids and the time and life, when I look at skiing now, I don’t really feel like I have anything, the motivation, the desire, the everything to kind of go through it again. Aside from the logistical challenges and my priorities and my family being first and not being able to put any of that aside to train and prepare the way I know I need to, I have so much experience. I know there’s no shortcuts in what I would have to do to really take a pretty solid commitment on my part. That would mean sacrificing a lot of other things.

“It would be one thing if it was a different sport like, you know, golf or tennis or something where I could go out there and limp into it. But skiing is just so dangerous and risky, and there’s so much there that can go bad for you. I think just the preparation for it is so demanding. It’s just not feasible to get that done.”

It’s the end of arguably the greatest Olympic skiing career in U.S. history.

Miller, who debuted at the Olympics in 1998 at age 20, earned two silver medals in 2002, a medal of every color in 2010 (after a well-publicized failure in 2006) and a bronze in 2014 (oldest Olympic Alpine medalist in history).

Only retired short track speed skater Apolo Ohno has more Winter Olympic medals among Americans with eight.

Miller also won world championships in four different disciplines and a pair of World Cup overall titles.

What will he miss? Any regrets?

“I never really feel like I miss anything,” he said. “I had such a long career. I think things ran their course. I tend to process things pretty much real time. I think that I was aware as I went through it I made sure I got the most out of skiing and my experiences. … I definitely don’t have regrets about the way that I did things.”

Miller did things his way. On the race courses with a trademark go-for-broke style. Off of it, too. He rubbed some the wrong way and even competed separate from the U.S. Ski Team at times.

“Of course, I made a lot of mistakes and stupid things, but above all I was able to do it the way that I wanted to and the way that I felt I should,” Miller said. “That, I think, is my biggest accomplishment.”

Miller is the first of the golden generation of U.S. Alpiners to bring the curtain down. Miller, Ted LigetyLindsey Vonn and Julia Mancuso all developed in the early 2000s and won Olympic gold medals.

The PyeongChang Winter Games are expected to be the final Olympics for Vonn and Mancuso. Ligety, at 33 years old with a wife and child, has not ruled out 2022.

Miller gained experience as an analyst for NBC Sports the last two World Cup seasons. It came pretty naturally. He has no reservations offering critical analysis of his former peers.

“I think people have always pointed out that I can be critical and kind of harsh that way,” Miller said. “Once you get to know me, or once you see that it’s never done in a malicious way at all, I just don’t have that in me. It’s not coming from a place of mean. It’s coming from a place of stating factual stuff from my perspective. I think people are OK with that for the most part.”

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