Lauren Blackwell Mirra was a constant in Dave Mirra’s life, showing up frequently on his social media postings as the couple raised two young daugthers, and the BMX legend posted a final heartbreaking tribute to his wife on Thursday just hours before taking his life.
Dave Mirra was found dead on Thursday evening of an apparent suicide. The Greenville Police Department said that Mirra was found in his car at 4 p.m., the victim of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
His death came as a shock to fans around the globe, who remembered Mirra as one of the most talented and creative BMX stars of all time. He later shifted his career, appearing as host of MTV’s Real World/Road Rules Challenge.
Tributes poured in from around the world, with fellow X-Games stars remembering Mirra as a groundbreaker, one who helped bring these sports to the mainstream.
Even the mayor of Greenville, Mirra’s adopted home, remembered the sports legend.
“We mourn the loss today of a great friend and wonderful human being who touched the lives of so many around the world with his gift,” the City of Greenville Mayor, Allen Thomas said (via People magazine). “He called Greenville, North Carolina home and was a humble guy talking with kids on a street corner about bikes as he was in his element on the world stage. A young life with so much to offer was taken to soon.”
Many expressed shock at Mirra’s death, saying they saw no signs that he was considering suicide. Just a few hours before his suicide, Dave Mirra posted a loving and bittersweet note to his wife, Lauren Blackwell Mirra, on Instagram. The picture showed Dave and his wife holding up champagne glasses in a framed photo. Alongside the picture, Mirra wrote, “My rock! Thank god”
Lauren Blackwell Mirra and his children showed up frequently in Dave’s social media posting. The BMX legend often shared pictures of his family on Instagram, showing his two young daughters learning archery and riding dirt bikes.
While discussing his retirement from BMX racing in a 2013 interview with ESPN, Dave Mirra mentioned the need to spend more time with his daughters.
“I have two daughters, ages 5 and 7, and they actually rip on their bikes. They’re more interested in racing than tricks, and they’re out-of-hand fast. We also got a go-kart for them, because they get stoked on watching rallycross, and we’ve been throwing up some cones in the parking lot. And what’s truly amazing is they’re also way into triathlons. They’re both much better swimmers than I ever was, and they just did a triathlon where the age group was 6 to 8. Maddie got second and Kenzie got third. She’s wasn’t even 6 yet but they let her race, so that’s pretty impressive! It just blows my mind. If they’re getting that go-for-it attitude and competitive spirit from me, then I couldn’t be more proud.”
Lauren Blackwell Mirra was also very involved in fitness, and served as a Holy Yoga leader. The practice is a style of Christian yoga created as a way to worship through prayer, breath work, and movement, noted Lauren’s website.
Lauren also shared her husband’s passion for endurance sports, competing in her first triathalon in 2013.
“So proud of @laurnicomirr for her first Tri. I love my family and to see a photo like this, makes my day. Everyday. #familyforlife,” Dave Mirra wrote on Instagram.
Many fans left messages of support for Dave Mirra’s wife online, sharing their condolences for with Lauren Blackwell Mirra and remembering fond memories of the BMX legend.
[Image via Instagram]