Few Olympic athletes were as flamboyant as American sprinter Florence Griffith-Joyner. The late athlete, who passed away in 1998 at the age of 38, is still the world record holder in the women’s 100m and 200m, although her 100m mark of 10.49 might have been wind-aided.
Known as much for her colorful outfits and fingernails as for her athletic prowess, Griffith-Joyner won her first Olympic medal in the 1984 Los Angeles Games, a silver in the 200m. While competing in the U.S. Olympic trials for the Seoul Olympics, Griffith-Joyner registered her 10.49 in the 100m, a mark that stunned everyone present. She would eventually win the 100m gold in Seoul with a time of 10.54 seconds, and bagged the 200m gold as well in a world record time of 21.34 seconds. She later won a third gold as a member of the 4x100m relay team, and a silver with the 4x400m relay team.
Griffith-Joyner died in her sleep on September 21, 1998 after suffering an epileptic seizure.
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