3-time US Olympian worked as escort
Three-time US Olympian Suzy Favor Hamilton has revealed that she worked as a Las Vegas escort for the past year.
Favor Hamilton, 44, has worked with Haley Heston's Private Collection since last December, booking engagements in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Chicago and Houston for upwards of $600 per hour.
According to the rates posted on Haley Heston's website, Favor Hamilton charged $6,000 for a 24-hour period. TheSmokingGun.com reports that she worked under the fake name "Kelly Lundy" but did reveal her true identity as an Olympic mid-distance runner to several male clients who she thought would keep it a secret.
It's an assumption she is now calling "a huge mistake."
"I take full responsibility for my mistakes. I'm not the victim and I'm not going that route," Favor Hamilton told TSG. "I'm owning up to what I did. I would not blame anybody except myself."
She added, "Everybody in this world makes mistakes. I made a huge mistake. Huge."
After the story appeared online, Hamilton released a series of tweets saying that she was ''drawn to escorting in large part because it provided many coping mechanisms for me when I was going through a very challenging time with my marriage and my life.''
According to the TSG report, Favor Hamilton described the escort business as "exciting," a change from the other life she lives which includes operating a successful Madison, Wis., real estate brokerage with her husband, delivering motivational speeches and doing promotional work for various businesses and groups, including Disney's running series and Wisconsin's Potato & Vegetable Growers Association.
The Orange County Register reported that Disney canceled a scheduled appearance by Favor Hamilton at the August 2013 expo during the Disneyland Half Marathon weekend.
She also told TSG that only her husband Mark, 44, knew about her work as an escort, but that, "He tried, he tried to get me to stop. He wasn't supportive of this at all." The couple, who have a seven-year-old daughter, reportedly lives in a $600,000 home and have no financial hardships based on a review of court and municipal records.
Favor Hamilton competed in the three Olympic Games — 1992, 1996 and 2000 — but never earned a medal. She earned the honor as the NCAA's most decorated female track-and-field athlete during her time at the University of Wisconsin after winning seven US national titles. The Big Ten Conference's Athlete of the Year award is also named after her.
At the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, she led the women's 1,500-meter final midway through the race with hopes of capturing a medal in honor of her brother Dan, who had committed suicide the year before. But when Favor Hamilton began slipping back in the pack, she fell to the ground.
Favor Hamilton has since appeared in national advertisements for Reebok, Clairol, Oakley and Pert Plus and appeared in a 1997 swimsuit calendar modeling a stars-and-stripes bikini and lounging on the sand without a top. She has battled depression, anxiety, an eating disorder and other health issues and spoke about them earlier this year.
When referring to a client she suspected of contacting a reporter about her secret life, Favor Hamilton told TSG, "He totally broke all the rules by outing me."
But she also stressed to the website that enacting revenge was not her style: "I don't want to be like him. Because he is scum. And I will not become scum to make myself feel good. I will not do it. I would suffer rather than go that route of being vindictive."
Favor Hamilton reportedly said that she had been planning to quit the escort business even before learning that TSG was investigating her connection to the illegal Haley Heston operation.
The report states that she has acknowledged contacting certain clients to "let them know I'm not doing this anymore and I'm moving on with my life. Because they're gonna try to contact me."
Favor Hamitlon also told TSG that she recently started therapy to "figure out myself why I've done what I've done."
She closes her series of tweets by saying, "I fully intend to make amends and get back to being a good mother, wife, daughter, and friend.''
The Associated Press contributed to this report.