Jennifer Abel Retires After Career As One of Canada’s Top Divers

by Emma Edmund 0

December 03rd, 2021 Canada, International, News

Jennifer Abel, who has won more world championship medals than any other Canadian diver, announced her retirement on Nov. 23.

“I’m happy, because I had such an amazing career, but at the same time I’m a little bit nervous because this is my whole life,” Abel said in an interview with CBC. “But I’m ready.”

Abel, who is now 30, has had a steadily successful career, culminating in a silver medal at the 2020 Olympics in the 3-meter synchronized springboard with Mélissa Citrini-Beaulieu. She won a bronze in the same event at the 2012 London Olympics with partner Émilie Haymans.

Minutes after stepping off the plane home from Tokyo, boxer David Lemieux proposed to Abel. Now engaged, the two are expecting a child together. 

Over the course of her career, she’s won 10 medals at World Championships, the most out of any Canadian diver, ever. Abel also consistently made the podium in the Commonwealth Games and the Pan-American Games. 

“My life as an athlete has prepared me for my adult life and now, for my life as a mother-to-be,” Abel said in a statement first reported by The Canadian Press. “Today, I know how to forgive myself after failure, where to draw strength in the face of adversity, and the type of energy it takes to succeed.”

In an open letter to her younger self, Abel said that before her, there weren’t many mixed-race girls in diving. She said she always dove “for the pleasure of it,” but outlined her journey to finding her identity outside of the pool and what it would mean to live without diving.

My life as an athlete has prepared me for my adult life and now, for my life as a mother-to-be,” Abel wrote. “Today, I know how to forgive myself after failure, where to draw strength in the face of adversity, and the type of energy it takes to succeed.”

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