Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Report: Maroney told Geddert of Nassar's abuse in 2011

April 25, 2018
McKayla Maroney of the United States gets a hug from her coach after her performance on the vault as the U.S. women's gymnastics team goes on its way to winning gold in the team competition during the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London, England, Tuesday, July 31, 2012. Photo: Brian Peterson/Minneapolis Star Tribune/MCT
McKayla Maroney of the United States gets a hug from her coach after her performance on the vault as the U.S. women's gymnastics team goes on its way to winning gold in the team competition during the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London, England, Tuesday, July 31, 2012. Photo: Brian Peterson/Minneapolis Star Tribune/MCT —

Gold medal-winning U.S. Olympian McKayla Maroney tried to tell former Twistars Gymnastics Club owner and USA Gymnastics Coach John Geddert about ex-MSU and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar's sexual abuse in 2011, Maroney said in an interview with NBC News

Maroney told NBC that she informed Geddert about Nassar's assault seven years ago. She said she told him of the experience she detailed when she initially came forward as a survivor of Nassar's abuse, and she said Nassar assaulted her in a Tokyo hotel room after a flight. 

In her #MeToo tweet where she declared she was a survivor, Maroney referred to the incident as the scariest night of her life.

"I thought I was going to die that night," Maroney tweeted.

"I remember waking up the next day and wanting to tell someone — and hoping that someone would see it in my eyes that something really bad just happened to me, that they would ask me," Maroney told NBC.

While being driven back from practice with Geddert and other gymnasts, Maroney said aloud, "Last night, it was like Larry was fingering me." Three others in the car said they remember the conversation, according to NBC.

Geddert did not react, but a gymnast Maroney looked up to dismissed her, Maroney told NBC. According to NBC, the gymnast said that did not happen.

"She was probably as confused as me," Maroney told NBC.

Geddert was a friend and close colleague of Nassar's for roughly 20 years. Geddert is named as a defendant on several lawsuits alongside Nassar, MSU and USA Gymanstics and is accused by survivors of fostering a verbally and emotionally abusive training environment, as well as ignoring gymnasts' injuries. Two gymnasts told CNN they attempted suicide because of Geddert's alleged abuse.

Geddert was suspended by USA Gymnastics in February and is under investigation by the Eaton County Sheriff's Office. Geddert transferred his ownership of Twistars Gymnastics Club to his wife in January.

“Ironically, Larry was our safe haven,” survivor Lindsey Lemke told CNN.

Maroney described years of abuse by Nassar to NBC. Maroney was 13 when she was first molested by Nassar, the first time she saw him for treatment, and Nassar continued to abuse her "hundreds" of times, every time he saw her, she told NBC.

"I always felt like Nassar was obsessed with her," U.S. Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman told NBC. Raisman, a former teammate of Maroney's, is also a survivor of Nassar's sexual abuse.

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