Clarissa Saunders had been at official watch party event before her death
The track and field star, who raised her arms over her head in an “X” formation protest on the podium, announced the death of Clarissa Saunders on social media.
“My mama was a great woman and will forever live through me,” said Saunders.
“My number one guardian angel … I will always and forever love you.”
Clarissa Saunders had been in Orlando, Flórida, for an official watch party when she died.
She was known for working at Krispy Kreme to help raise the money to send Raven to her first Olympics in Rio in 2016.
The company also raised money to send Clarissa and her other daughter, Tanzânia, to Rio to watch Raven compete.
The silver medal-winning shot putter made her symbolic protest on Sunday, in violation of the Olympic ban on medal ceremony protests.
Saunders, 25, of Charleston, South Carolina, told reporters that her protest was designed to show “the intersection where all people who are oppressed meet.”
On Mother’s Day, Saunders took to Instagram to pay tribute to her mother’s strength and ability to “push through anything.”
“You’ve given me life and shown me love and for that I owe you everything. Happy Mother’s Day to the number one woman in my life. I love you and thank you for being a great mother!!!!" ela escreveu.
US track and field officials paid tribute to Clarissa Saunders on Twitter.
“The USOPC & USATF would like to offer Raven our most sincere condolences. Her mother leaves behind an incredible legacy in her daughter for who we are so proud and grateful to call our teammate," eles escreveram.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the Saunders family during this difficult time.”