First Olympic women’s aerials champion Cheryazova dies at 50
Lina Cheryazova, the first woman to win an Olympic aerials skiing gold medal, has died. She was 50.
Officials in the Russian city of Novosibirsk, where Cheryazova was living for the last two decades, said she died “following a lengthy illness,” without giving further details.
Competing for newly independent Uzbekistan, Cheryazova won gold when aerials skiing became an official Olympic event in 1994 in Lillehammer.
Aerials skiing had earlier been a demonstration sport.
Cheryazova's career was derailed later that year when she suffered a serious head injury while training in the United States, striking her head on the ramp during a jump, and spent days in a coma.
She retired after the 1998 Winter Olympics, where she failed to qualify for the final. 
Cheryazova moved to Russia later, where she helped to raise funds for skiers as well as promote sport and fitness.
Cheryazova remains Uzbekistan's only medalist at the Winter Olympics, and the only woman to win a gold medal at the Summer or Winter Olympics for the Central Asian nation.
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Source(s): AP