It’s October in Salt Lake City, Utah, and college senior Lauren McCluskey is heading home after a night class. For weeks, she has been struggling with hassle from an ex-boyfriend, fending off attempts to lure her to a rendezvous. But as she talks to her mother on the telephone, someone approaches – leaving her to gasp her last words in desperation down the line.
Lauren’s life began on February 12, 1997, in Berkeley, California. But while she was still a baby, her parents Jill and Matt found work at Washington State University, moving their family to the college city of Pullman, WA. There she showed an interest in active pursuits from an early age.
In fact, when Lauren was just eight years old, she entered her first track event with the Junior Olympic association. And soon, she was setting records across the board. Amazingly, by the time that she started high school, she was already competing on a national level in both hurdles and high jump as well as multi-events.