Tori Bowie Credited Her Close-Knit Family for Her Success — Meet Her Grandmother and Sister


Jun. 13 2023, Updated 3:01 p.m. ET

Tori Bowie attends the ESPYS in 2018
Source: Getty Images

Three-time Olympic medalist Frentorish "Tori" Bowie has died at 32. Her death was announced on May 3, 2023, via her management company and U.S. Track and Field. Tori's loss is not exclusive to the sports world. In 2016, she credited her success to her supportive family, especially her grandmother, who obtained custody of her and her sister.

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Naturally, the Bowie family is devastated at the loss of their beloved sister and granddaughter. Here's what you need to know about them and how they are doing now.

Tori Bowie attends Sports Illustrated's Most Fashionable party in 2018.
Source: Getty Images
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Tori Bowie often credited her success to her grandmother, Bobbie Smith.

In 2016, Bobbie Smith told NBC that she fought a custody battle to achieve guardianship of Tori and her sister, Tamarra, after the sisters were put in foster care at two and one, respectively. "I encouraged them to go to school, don’t think about boys at a young age, and to do good. And they took my advice."

She added, "It makes me think about no matter how bad things can get or start in your life or be in your life, it's still good things that can come out of it."

The same year, Tori explained that she's from a small town called Sandhill, Miss., which created a more close-knit community between herself and her family. She told NBC, "My grandmother told me a long time, ago I don't care if you're sweeping a porch for a living. She said, you need to do your best. So I've lived by that every single day."

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Tori Bowie had one sister, Tamarra, who is 11 months younger than her.

As it turns out, Tori was not the only athlete in the family. According to NBC, Tori and Tamarra ran track in high school, which they initially hesitated to do based on the track uniforms. "I just thought we were too young for our butts to be showing, you know," Tamarra said. Their reservations changed, and the sisters joined their local high school track team.

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The pair were very close, and, per Daily Mail, Tamarra said in 2016, "I was that annoying little sister. Even when she went to college. I followed her there. But it finally hit her the other day when she was going through processing that she's going to the Olympics. I told her: 'I've been waiting for it to hit you!'"

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Following Tori's death, Tamarra posted a note on Facebook reminding readers everyone has inner struggles. "People who pretend to be happy have some of the saddest souls and people who do not try to convince the world that they are happy have the most genuine souls, because they are content with just being them for them and nobody else," she wrote.

Tamarra has founded her own law firm, Bowie Law Firm LLC, where she is an attorney. She is also a mother to a son named Grant.

What was Tori Bowie's cause of death?

According to an autopsy shared with The New York Times, Tori was eight months pregnant and in labor at the time of her death. The autopsy noted that eclampsia (a severe condition characterized by seizures and coma) and respiratory distress were possible complications leading to Tori's death. According to a program from Tori's funeral service, she was preceded in death by a daughter named Ariana Bowie.

Our thoughts are with Tori's family, friends, and fans during this tragic and difficult time.

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