ESPYS Honor Nassar Victims With Arthur Ashe Courage Award
Over 140 “sister survivors” of the doctor’s sexual abuse were in attendance.
At the 2018 ESPYS, the hundreds of “sister survivors” of disgraced Michigan State and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar’s sexual abuse received the Arthur Ashe Courage Award.
Sarah Klein, who came forward as the first to be abused by Nassar, was on hand to accept the award along with more than 140 other victims. Klein said she and the other recipients in attendance represented hundreds more who weren’t able to attend.
“Make no mistake, we are here on this stage to present an image for the world to see: a portrait of survival, a new vision of courage,” she said. “Telling our stories of abuse over and over and over again in graphic detail is not easy … it’s grueling and it’s painful, but it is time.”
Olympic gold medal gymnast Aly Raisman, who was also abused by Nassar and spoke out against him at his sentencing hearing, encouraged victims of abuse to come forward.
“All those years we were told, ‘You are wrong. You misunderstood. He’s a doctor. It’s OK. Don’t worry, we’ve got it covered. Be careful. There are risks involved.’ The intention: to silence us in favor of money, medals and reputation,” she said Wednesday. “To all the survivors out there, don’t let anyone rewrite your story. We may suffer alone, but we survive together.”
In January, Nassar was sentenced to 40 to 175 years in prison. Michigan State settled multiple lawsuits related to Nassar’s crimes and is paying out $500 million to his victims.
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