Who Is Samantha Cerio?

Photo: Instagram 
Who Is Samantha Cerio?

When I was a kid and the Summer Olympic games around there was nothing more exciting to me. That was when I got a chance to watch the gymnasts take the floor and wow the judges and us folks watching at home with some truly killer moves. Seriously, how do they make their bodies do half the stuff they do? It baffles and humbles me to this day.

While those gymnasts might make what they do look easy, the truth of the matter is that it is anything but simple. One wrong move, move one second too soon or too late and they can suffer an injury so intense that it sidelines them for months, if not for the rest of their careers. Gymnasts around the world howled when they saw what happened to Samantha Cerio. You might be wondering who that is, well, I'm here to fill you in and tell you about the injury that got the world talking.

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1. The Injury 

When you watch a sport like gymnastics on TV, you are usually watching professional athletes at their career peak. They have spent usually lifetimes training to compete on a national or international level. Their bodies are finely tuned machines. That's why when one of them injures themselves dramatically on a televised stage it's so jaw-dropping and unexpected. 

Samantha Cerio might not have been an Olympic athlete, but she was a gymnast who dedicated 18 years to the sport of her choice. She was competing in the NCAA championships for her school, Auburn, when the unthinkable happened. She hit a landed during her first tumble wrong and dislocated both of her knees, tearing several muscles in the process. The whole harrowing event was caught live and is now circulating the web. 

2. Fans Reacted 

It was an injury that was just excruciating to behold, it was also an injury that marked the end of a career that she dedicated her life to. While it might seem on the surface like a painful thing to have the memory of that moment and her horrific injury captured on the internet for all time, there is a positive in her story being spread so quickly throughout the world. 

You see, people aren't just watching the video to indulge a quick gross-out, they are watching it and commenting on Samantha's own Instagram page, cheering her own, offering their support, and giving her the wellspring of love that she needs to recover. Said fan Jan Hunter, "What an amazing career you have had and it has been an absolute joy to watch you. You are an amazing young lady who has achieved so much and positively influenced so many. Continued prayers for you and your recovery. Praying for God to grant medical staff wisdom. Know that the Hunters love you and are praying!"

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3. Will She Recover?

Samantha's injuries are very serious. In addition to dislocating both of her knees, she tore ligaments in both of them as well. She is currently undergoing a series of surgical treatments in a hospital in Louisiana. These treatments will make it possible for her to walk and live a normal lifestyle. 

What they won't be able to do is get her back in the shape she was before this terrible accident occurred. Samantha as a human being will absolutely recover from this. She's strong, and surrounded by family and friends. But Samantha the gymnast has competed for the final time. 

4. Samantha Speaks Out 

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While most women in her position would be focusing on just keeping her head low and getting through this, Samantha has taken a different approach and that has made her even more admirable than before. She issued a statement via her Instagram page about what she experienced and about a major decision about her life going forward. 

"Friday night was my final night as a gymnast. After 18 years I am hanging up my grips and leaving the chalk behind. I couldn’t be prouder of the person that gymnastics has made me [sic] become. It’s taught me hard work, humility, integrity, and dedication, just to name a few. It’s given me challenges and roadblocks [sic] that I would have never imagined that has tested who I am as a person. It may not have ended the way I had planned, but nothing ever goes as planned. Thank you Auburn family for giving me a home and a chance to continue doing the sport that will always be my first love. I am honored to have had the privilege to represent the navy and orange AU for the past 4 years with my team by my side. Thank you for letting me share my passion with you. Thank you for letting me be a part of something bigger than myself."

5. Her Coach's Statement 

Samantha isn't the only one speaking out about her accident either. Her coach, Jeff Graba, released a statement about it as well. “Senior Samantha Cerio suffered two dislocated knees Friday in Baton Rouge with multiple torn ligaments in both knees. Sam will undergo surgery this afternoon with Dr. James Andrews,” it said.

“The Auburn Athletics Department is very thankful for the outstanding care that the Auburn and the LSU medical staffs have provided to Sam. We also are thankful for the support from the LSU Athletics Department for going above and beyond in this situation. Sam is a fighter and is in great spirits. We couldn’t have a better leader for this team.”

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Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cats, Batman and Margot. Her work focuses on relationships, pop culture and news. For more of her work, check out her Tumblr