Mari-Rae Sopper had given up a career as a successful lawyer in D.C. and took a large cut in pay to pursue her dream. As Head Coach of the UCSB program, she was determined to save the program from elimination. She had chosen to devote herself fully to the sport she loved and to live her dream. You can find out more about Mari-Rae's remarkable life, courage and enthusiasm at the memorial web site set up by her family. After the tragedy, her family set up the Mari-Rae Sopper Memorial Gymnastics Fund to honor her memory and to extend her dream. The nonprofit fund seeks to support women's gymnastics at the collegiate and youth level.
Additional links about Mari-Rae:9/12/01: UCSB gogauchos.com storyUSGyms.net Memorial
"...let the official record say, Mari-Rae Sopper, when last seen, was headed toward her dream"
--Mike Sharples, former Head Coach, ISU