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Ellie Soutter death: Friends and family pay tribute after Team GB snowboarder dies on her 18th birthday

‘This cruel world took my soul mate and ‘Bessie’ from me yesterday on her 18th birthday’

Jack de Menezes
Friday 27 July 2018 11:17
Team GB snowboarder Ellie Soutter competes in 2016

Tributes have been paid to Team GB snowboarder Ellie Soutter after she died on her 18th birthday, with her father posting an emotional message on Facebook after news of her death was announced.

Soutter passed away on Wednesday on the same day that she turned 18, and the teenager was described by the British Olympic Association as “one of the country’s best up-and-coming snowboarders” who had been tipped to compete at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.

Writing on Facebook, Soutter’s father, Tony, said: “This cruel world took my soul mate and ‘Bessie’ from me yesterday on her 18th birthday.

“I was so proud of the beautiful young woman she had turned into. Ellie I will miss you more than you could have ever imagined. Rest in peace you little champion!

“For those who would like to toast her amazing short life we will be raising a glass in memory of her this Friday 6.30pm at the Crychar Les Gets.”

Tributes have been paid to Team GB snowboarder Ellie Soutter after she died in her 18th birthday

The BOA also paid tribute to Soutter, with chairman Hugh Robertson and athlete commission chairman Ben Hawes saying: "Ellie was an incredibly popular and well-liked member of the team. Our thoughts are with her family and friends at this sad time.”

The news caused a tragic shockwave throughout the Olympic community, with Soutter recognised by many as a rising star after securing Team GB’s only medal at European Youth Olympic Winter Festival in Turkey last year.

The British Ski and Snowboard governing body issued a statement to express their condolences, which read: “British Ski & Snowboard is saddened to hear of the sudden passing of Ellie Soutter, 18. Ellie was one of the country’s best up-and-coming snowboarders, competing in both snowboard cross and freeride.

“The thoughts and condolences of the British Ski & Snowboard community are with Ellie’s family, friends and teammates.”

Pyeongchang 2018 competitor Emily Sarsfield, who competed at this year’s Olympics in the Ski Cross, said: “So sad to hear the news of the passing of @elliesoutter. You really were an amazing girl! Such a fun teammate, made me smile every day, cracking all the jokes and enjoying life to its fullest! I’m going to miss you and your amazing energy. All my thoughts to your family.”

Olympic gold medallist Amy Williams, who won the women’s skeleton in 2010, added: “Such sad tragic news to wake up to. Thoughts and prayers go to Ellie Soutter’s family.”

For confidential support call Samaritans on 116 123.