The world cheered in 1996 when the “Magnificent Seven” Olympic women’s gymnastics team won the gold in Atlanta, thanks in part to the spirited floor exercise and balance beam performance of Dominique Moceanu.
Dominique’s competitive career is long over – she’s now married with two children – but her personal story is even more amazing. In an interview with 20/20 airing tonight, she reveals what she calls “the biggest bombshell of her life.”
Just two weeks before giving birth to her daughter, Carmen, in 2007, Dominique received a package in the mail containing a letter and photos from a young woman who explained that she was her younger sister – a sister Dominique had never known existed.
She would soon find out that her parents had given up her sister for adoption because they were too poor to afford the extensive medical care she needed.
But the story doesn’t end there…
Dominique’s sister was born without legs – an unbelievable irony for a gymnast whose athletic body catapulted her to international fame.
Happily, though, the sisters are making up for lost time. They’ve met in person and are delighted to find that they share a number of traits: “The tones in our voices, our handwriting, the way we laugh and chuckle. It’s mind-blowing,” says Dominique.
And now her children – Carmen, now four, and Vincent, 3 – can get to know their “new” aunt. (Dominique has another younger sister, Christina.)
The Olympian shares this family secret and other memories in her new autobiography, Off Balance. Sounds like a must-read!
Will you be tuning in to Dominique’s interview tonight?
[Photo: via Twitter]
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