The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Former Olympic diving champion Mark Lenzi hospitalized
BY STEVE DeSHAZO
Lenzi, a 43-year old Stafford High School alumnus. is in critical condition at Vidant Medical Center, according to a hospital spokesperson. His mother, Ellie, said he was unconscious on Wednesday after his blood pressure fell to 78/48. Normal is 120/80.
Lenzi entered the hospital last Saturday after a rash of recent fainting spells. His mother said he had been taking medication for a heart ailment.
A former high school wrestler, Lenzi rose to national prominence after winning the 1992 Olympic gold medal on the 3-meter diving board in Barcelona, Spain, just a few years after taking up the sport.
He retired two years later, but after a string of unsatisfying career moves, returned in 1995 to reunite with his Hall of Fame coach, Hobie Billingsley. He earned a bronze medal at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta before retiring for good.
He spent a year as diving coach at East Carolina University and has also coached youth divers.
Lenzi became enamored with diving after watching Greg Louganis win the 1984 Olympic title on television. He joined a Northern Virginia diving team and earned a scholarship to Indiana University, where he became a two-time NCAA champion (1989, 1990).
Steve DeShazo: 540/374-5443