Numerous allegations of sexual assault against former Michigan State doctor Larry Nassar have sent shock waves through the Spartans community.
Nassar, a former athletic department doctor who worked with multiple teams including women’s gymnastics, is facing nearly 60 allegations of sexual assault.
Nassar was fired by Michigan State last fall after more than 20 seasons with the Spartans. Women’s gymnastics coach Kathie Klages allegedly ignored at least two complaints of mistreatment by Nassar in the 1990s. She was suspended by the university on Monday and announced her retirement on Wednesday.
There is a lot of outrage and frustration among those in the Michigan State community, and one former student-athlete expressed her feelings to the current administration in an open letter.
Catherine Hannum, a former member of Michigan State’s rowing team and a 2014 graduate, was treated by Nassar during her time in East Lansing. She wrote she was “deeply troubled, sickened, disturbed and ultimately let down by the news of the allegations against Larry Nassar.”
— Cate Hannum (@cate_hannum) February 17, 2017
The letter — which can be read in full here — was addressed to university president Lou Anna Simon, athletic director Mark Hollis and other administrators. It asks for answers.
Please tell us all: How did things get this bad? Did Nassar really go under the radar for nearly two decades? How? Why has no one at the school contacted my peers or me — his former patients?
When I chose Michigan State and signed my letter of intent, it was based on the display of and emphasis on integrity. Integrity is what sold me on this University. Integrity is exactly what I need to see now from my beloved Michigan State.
Hannum said that she “was made to feel special” that “the great” Larry Nassar was her doctor during her time at Michigan State. She added that “three years later, it is increasingly clear to me that some of the treatments I received walked a very fine line between what was and was not medically necessary.”
Hannum said that she had not yet been contacted by the university regarding the allegations against Nassar.
I want answers. I want to know how things got so bad. I want to know who kept reports of his abuse private. I want to know why it took so long to figure out he was dangerous.
Most of all, I would like to see Michigan State live up to its high standards. Own its mistakes. Connect with all former patients of Nassar. And show compassion, care and concern for all of us.