Minnesota-born skier Lindsey Vonn was known throughout her career for a remarkable ability to persevere and come back from injuries to achieve greatness.
But according to Vonn, she wasn't even the strongest person in her own family.
"My mom was the strongest woman that I've ever met," Vonn said. "She had a stroke when she had me, and she lost a lot of physical ability. ... She had her share of obstacles and adversity in her life, and she never complained a day in her life. ... With all my injuries, I looked to her for inspiration."
Vonn was reflecting on her mother, Lindy Krohn Lund, during a recent phone interview. That strength, Vonn said, continued all the way through her battle with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) to her death at age 70 on Aug. 26.
A celebration of life was scheduled for 3 p.m. Friday at Christ Presbyterian Church in Edina, honoring the legacy of a woman who was an accomplished attorney, among many other things.
"Obviously it's been a really hard time for me and my family," said Vonn, who has four siblings. "We're all kind of processing it in our own way. We did everything we could for her. ALS is a horrific disease that has no cure. We made the most of it and spent as much time with our mom as we could."
After losing her mom to ALS and seeing how the disease has impacted other members of the tight-knit skiing community to which Vonn belongs even in retirement, Vonn said she will continue to work to raise awareness in the fight against it.
"When we found out about her (ALS diagnosis), she really wasn't ready to talk about it. We kept it in our family for a long time, but in the end she wanted to help others. That's really the only reason we ended up talking publicly about it," Vonn said. "I think ultimately my mother wanted to bring more awareness to the disease and because of the position I'm in, I'm able to do that."