Four-time Olympic medallist Emilie Heymans retires from competitive diving
Canadian diver Emilie Heymans, who medalled in four consecutive Olympics, fights back tears as she announces her retirement from competition, in Montreal, Wednesday, January 16, 2013. (Paul Chiasson / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Wednesday, January 16, 2013 2:28PM EST
MONTREAL -- With four Olympic medals under her belt, Emilie Heymans is putting an end to her professional diving career.
The 31-year-old diver made her retirement official today at the Montreal training facility where it all started for her two decades ago.
Heymans retires after winning medals in four consecutive Summer Olympics -- the first female diver and first Canadian Olympian to do so.
She had 84 podium finishes in international competition, including 14 titles.
The Belgian-born Heymans, who grew up near Montreal, started out in gymnastics but was too big. She decided to switch to diving at age 11.
She won her record-setting last Olympic medal at the 2012 Summer Games in London, grabbing a bronze in the three-metre synchro springboard event with partner Jennifer Abel. It was Canada's first medal at the Games.
Heymans also won a silver medal in Sydney in 2000, a bronze in Athens in 2004 and another silver in Beijing in 2008. Three of her four medals came in synchro events with three different partners.