MARYSVILLE – Jarred Rome, a Marysville-Pilchuck graduate and two-time Olympian, has died at the age of 42.
Rome was a member of the 2019 Snohomish County Sports Hall of Fame class inducted Wednesday at Angel of the Winds Arena.
For a number of years Rome ran a camp each summer at M-P.
“I got together with Randy Davis, the head coach here, and said, ‘Hey, let’s start doing something,’” Rome said in 2015. “I just want to make this a place where people can get Olympic-level coaching.” Rome started the camps teaching his specialty, discus, but added other events and other coaches from there.
“The reason I love track and field so much is that it’s the largest high school sport in America and every kid can find an event — the big kids throw, the skinny kids run, the tall kids high jump, the fast kids sprint. It’s the greatest sport, and I want to get more kids involved so that hopefully we’ll see another Olympian in a Marysville school or Snohomish or Everett,” he said.
Rome was a mentor of Mike Torie of Lakewood, who helped at the camps.
“I’m just excited to be here, and to tell the kids who maybe think they aren’t good, to keep working,” Torie said. “When you have adversity, there is opportunity to grow and get stronger.”
The camp grew each year.
“I’m impressed with the turnout, especially for track and field,” he said. “You don’t hear a whole lot about track and field, so to have this kind of a turnout is really good.”
Rome, who represented the United States at the Olympics in 2004 and 2012 in the discus, talked about how he was ready to give the sport up after finishing 14th at nationals in 2003, but was talked into sticking with it by his mother.
“The two things I learned in my life you need to have to have success are failure — that’s No. 1 — and support,” Rome said. “I had lots of failure. I was never the top thrower in high school, I was never the top thrower in college. I considered myself to be the hardest worker. I never had the talent, I frankly never believed I could make the national team, that was never a goal of mine. The support I had shows tonight from the family and friends who are here, without your support I would never be here.”
His older sister, Monica, told The Herald that her brother was found dead Saturday morning by friends. She said her brother went out with friends to the Tulalip Resort Casino and wasn’t feeling well Friday. The cause and manner of death were not known to the family.