Olympic gymnast McKayla Maroney revealed in January 2019 that her father, Mike Maroney, had died at the age of 59. The news was delivered with a tribute on Instagram. More than one year later, she has revealed the cause of death through a series of posts on her Instagram Story.
Maroney posted multiple videos on Saturday in order to provide some new information. She first discussed transitioning from an Olympic-level athlete to working on her music career. Maroney then provided details about her father's death, which she hadn't shared with anyone prior to Saturday. She revealed that he had been trying to detox in a hotel when he passed away.
"In short, my dad, we found out he was addicted to pain pills," Maroney said in her Story. "I didn't know this. He went to a hotel randomly one day and was like 'I'm going to quit.' And we were like 'What? What?' His best friend took him, and he died trying to detox, quit from pain pills. He could have just gone to a rehab place and done it right. He didn't and he passed away."
As Maroney continued to explain, losing her father took away a piece of her. She still struggles with seeing a photo of Mike and realizing that it's all she has of him. She said that it's very sad, but it will be leading to some projects in the future.
The plan, as Maroney revealed on Saturday, is to finish some of her songs before taking on a project that will center on her father. She wants to first release an EP about Mike before ultimately releasing a full album.
Coming from a sports-centric family, Maroney revealed that she didn't initially receive support from her parents about her fledgling music career. Her father was a football player and her mother was an ice skater. However, she will be using this music to pay tribute to her father through a series of songs, which will ultimately be compiled into an album.
The loss of her father was made more difficult due to the revelation that Maroney had been sexually abused by former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, who was convicted in January 2018. He was called the "most prolific child molester in history" and had reportedly molested Maroney hundreds of times.
Following Nassar's conviction, Maroney sequestered herself in her home and didn't leave due to the paparazzi outside. She said that she just stayed inside and ate bad food. Maroney did make a declaration that 2019 would be her year, but she was met with the news that her father had died.
(Photo Credit: Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)