2002 Olympic skeleton champion says medal stolen - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

2002 Olympic skeleton champion says medal stolen

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OCEANSIDE, Calif. (AP/CBS 8) — The winner of the women's skeleton at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics says her gold medal has been stolen.

Tristan Gale Geisler says her medal, Olympic ring, engagement ring, computers and other possessions were taken during a break-in at her Oceanside home Wednesday just after noon. She says she and her Marine pilot Jon had left for lunch before the theft happened.

"It's tough... you remember the first moment when you get your Olympic medal, and you remember when you lost it too," Geisler said.

Geisler says her family is especially devastated over the loss of the precious medal, which was about to be moved.

"If (the thieves) had come a day earlier, they would not have a medal. If they had come a day later, maybe not, because it would have been packed up. They got lucky," Geisler said.

The suspects, described by witnesses as three young Hispanic males, also took the athlete's engagement ring, computer hard drives and various video games.

Geisler is hoping the crooks have a change of heart when it comes to her honor earned with blood, sweat and tears.

"I really hope you needed it. I really hope you needed this money that bad, because I worked very, very hard for that, and if you have any idea waht that's like you can bring it back," she said.

Police in Oceanside, Calif., confirmed Thursday that an investigation is under way.

Competing under her maiden name at the time, Geisler helped American sliders sweep the skeleton golds at Salt Lake nearly nine years ago, when the sport returned to the Olympic program after a 54-year absence.

If the medal is deemed to be lost, there are contingency policies in which Geisler could have her Olympic prize reissued.

Information contributed by News 8 Reporter Phil Blauer.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.


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