KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City-area Olympian Leanne Wong has been placed in quarantine in Japan after being exposed to COVID-19.
Wong trains at the GAGE Center in Blue Springs and qualified to go to Tokyo as an alternate athlete for the women's gymnastics team.
However, another Kansas City-area gymnast who qualified as an alternate, Kara Eaker, tested positive for COVID-19 after the team arrived in Japan to train ahead of the games.
According to Wong's coach, Al Fong, she was placed in quarantine due to briefly being in contact with Eaker.
"Because she's considered close contact, even though she wasn't in the room, but you know they went ahead and measured the distance from bed to bed. You know the girls didn't have their masks on in the room, but they really rarely stayed together. Because they have, they're just individual people, you know they would all eat together but we'd be at a table, where we are three feet apart and all that stuff," Fong explained.
No other gymnasts have been placed in quarantine at this time.
Fong said that Wong will have to quarantine for the full recommended length because she is not vaccinated.
“I just want people to know this girl has worked extremely hard to be here. They came in here and they continue working really hard, doing their duty to being in this hard position. This is just the hardest part you could quarantine may be in your house is different, but quarantine in a strange country, and in these little rooms it's extremely different," Fong's wife and fellow coach, Armine Barutyan said.
Wong's parents said she is not experiencing any symptoms.
USA Gymnastics released the following statement:
“One of the replacement athletes for the women’s artistic gymnastics team received a positive COVID test on Sunday, July 18. After reviewing the implemented COVID protocols with members of the delegation, the local government determined that the affected replacement athlete and one other replacement athlete would be subject to additional quarantine restrictions. Accordingly, on Monday, the Olympic athletes moved to separate lodging accommodations and a separate training facility, as originally planned, and will continue their preparation for the Games. The entire delegation continues to be vigilant and will maintain strict protocols while they are in Tokyo.”