Cross-country runner was ready to spread her wings

  • Article by: MARY LYNN SMITH and MYRON P. MEDCALF , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 4, 2007 - 12:01 AM

Just starting to resume training runs, Caty Delwiche was struck and killed in Mankato by a motorist who lost control of his truck.

After being sidelined with an injury for the start of her first cross-country running season at Minnesota State University, Mankato, Catherine Delwiche, one of the top high school runners in Minnesota, finally got the doctor's OK to run again.

"She was thrilled," said her father, Jeff Delwiche.

She was doing everything right as she began a training run Tuesday, gliding easily down the sidewalk along Warren Street in Mankato, when a car crossed several lanes of traffic and jumped the curb.

Delwiche, 18, was killed, and her teammate, Laura Palmer, also 18, who was riding her bike alongside, suffered minor injuries.

"I have so many thoughts right now," her father said quietly over the phone Wednesday from the family home in Glencoe, Minn. And then there was silence. "Thoughts like maybe I wish I never started her running. ... She's given us so much joy. But I don't know if the joy outweighs this pain. It's indescribable."

Jeff Delwiche, a former Hopkins high school athlete, began running with his daughter when she was 10, maybe 11, he said. She ran nearly every day, rain, snow or shine. When she wasn't training with her high school team, she was running side by side with Jeff.

Caty Delwiche was on the high school varsity squad by the time she was in seventh grade. She finished 11th at the state cross-country meet her junior year and wanted to finish in the top 10 her senior year, her father said.

"But she had a horrible sprained ankle all season and it just wasn't getting any better," her father said. She finished 20th in the Class A state cross-country meet last fall and fourth at the Spring 2007 track meet. And she ended that run with a stress fracture, which kept her from running for a couple months, until this fall.

"We thought she was healthy when she went off to college," Jeff Delwiche said. But knots in her calf kept her from training with her college team -- until Tuesday.

"The car may have hit her head on," Delwiche said. "She likely saw what was happening."

No alcohol detected

According to early reports from the State Patrol, Dale Hoechst, 57, of Mankato, was driving south along Warren Street near the campus when he lost control of his vehicle and struck the two girls before hitting a phone junction box and a tree. Investigators said no alchohol was detected.

Both Hoechst and Palmer had been discharged from Immanuel St. Joseph's Hospital by Wednesday afternoon, according to hospital officials.

News of the accident spread quickly around campus, with more than 50 athletes crowding into the hospital along with Caty's friends and family. Text messages and cell phone calls spread the word to high school teams that had competed against her.

"She had a wind underneath her sails," said Brent Bohn, a former youth pastor who knew Delwiche for 4½ years. "She was full of hope. She had fire and she had zeal."

Letting go of pressures

She had been excited about leaving for college and talked about being a nurse. "She was ready to spread her wings," her father said. And she was ready to let go of some of the pressure she put on herself to be a top high school student and athlete.

On Sunday, she told her father that she had found her first boyfriend.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Los Angeles - C. Frias 2:10 PM
Colorado - J. De La Rosa
San Francisco - M. Bumgarner 2:40 PM
Arizona - A. Chafin
Boston - C. Buchholz 6:05 PM
Pittsburgh - F. Liriano
Toronto - J. Happ 6:05 PM
Baltimore - B. Norris
Washington - B. Treinen 6:10 PM
Atlanta - A. Wood
Miami - H. Alvarez 6:10 PM
NY Mets - D. Gee
NY Yankees - B. McCarthy 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - A. Cobb
Cincinnati - D. Corcino 7:05 PM
Chicago Cubs - K. Hendricks
Chicago WSox - C. Sale 7:10 PM
Kansas City - Y. Ventura
Cleveland - C. Carrasco 7:10 PM
Houston - B. Oberholtzer
Detroit - D. Price 7:10 PM
Minnesota - K. Gibson
Milwaukee - M. Fiers 7:15 PM
St. Louis - A. Wainwright
Seattle - J. Paxton 9:05 PM
LA Angels - C. Wilson
Texas - D. Holland 9:05 PM
Oakland - J. Samardzija
Philadelphia - C. Hamels 9:10 PM
San Diego - E. Stults
Tampa Bay 9/18/14 7:25 PM
Atlanta
San Diego 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Dallas 9/21/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Washington 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Houston 9/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Minnesota 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Tennessee 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Baltimore 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Green Bay 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Indianapolis 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Oakland 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New England
San Francisco 9/21/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Denver 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Kansas City 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Miami
Pittsburgh 9/21/14 7:30 PM
Carolina
Chicago 9/22/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
(5) Auburn 9/18/14 6:30 PM
(20) Kansas State
Connecticut 9/19/14 7:00 PM
So Florida
Old Dominion 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Rice
Troy 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(13) Georgia
Georgia Tech 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Virginia Tech
Eastern Mich 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(11) Michigan State
Iowa 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Maryland 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Syracuse
Tulane 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Duke
Hawaii 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Marshall 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Carolina 9/20/14 2:30 PM
East Carolina
Army 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Virginia 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(21) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 9/20/14 2:30 PM
SMU
Rutgers 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Central Mich 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Kansas
Utah 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Florida 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(3) Alabama
Louisville 9/20/14 2:30 PM
FIU
Fla Atlantic 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Wyoming
Indiana 9/20/14 3:00 PM
(18) Missouri
San Jose St 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Minnesota
Texas State 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Illinois
Massachusetts 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Penn State
Georgia State 9/20/14 5:00 PM
Washington
Appalachian St 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Miss State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
(8) LSU
Northern Ill 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas
Middle Tennessee 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Memphis
Utah State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Miami-Ohio 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Idaho 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
(14) So Carolina 9/20/14 6:30 PM
Vanderbilt
(4) Oklahoma 9/20/14 6:30 PM
West Virginia
Ga Southern 9/20/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
UNLV 9/20/14 7:00 PM
Houston
(22) Clemson 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State
Miami-Florida 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
New Mexico 9/20/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 9/20/14 9:00 PM
Arizona
Louisiana 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Boise State
(2) Oregon 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
San Diego St 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Oregon State
Toronto 9/19/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Edmonton 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Calgary 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Ottawa 9/21/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan

ADVERTISEMENT

Advertisement
Golden Gavel by Star Tribune

Countdown to great deals

Bid Sept. 21-29

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Do you support Wednesday's decision to sideline Adrian Peterson again?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close