Kelly Catlin's father describes 'perfect storm' that led to cyclist's death

The family of Kelly Catlin have spoken out following the tragic death of the 23 year old Olympic cyclist last week.

Three-time World Champion Catlin was believed to to have taken her own life after what her father described as a 'perfect storm' of depression, injuries and determination to succeed at all costs.

In an interview with the Washington Post, Mark Catlin said the 2016 Olympic silver medalist "gave 110% to whatever she was doing" and that "part of her undoing was her personal code."

As a member of the women's team pursuit, Catlin won three successive gold medals between 2016 and 2018 at the World Track cycling championships.

Born in Saint Paul, Minnesota, Catlin was one of triplets with her sister Christine and brother Colin.

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U.S. Olympic cyclist Kelly Catlin
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U.S. Olympic cyclist Kelly Catlin
Bronze medalist Kelly Caitlin of the US listens to her national anthem during the podium ceremony for the Women's individual pursuit on day four of the 2017 Track Cycling World Championships in Hong Kong on April 15, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Anthony WALLACE (Photo credit should read ANTHONY WALLACE/AFP/Getty Images)
Jennifer Valente, Kimberly Geist, Kelly Caitlin and Emma White of USA during the Women's Team Pursuit first round during day one of the Tissot UCI Track Cycling World Cup at Lee Valley VeloPark, London. (Photo by Paul Harding/PA Images via Getty Images)
Gold medalist Chloe Dygert (C) of the US celebrates on the podium with silver medalist Australia's Ashlee Ankudinoff (L) and her compatriot and bronze medalist Kelly Caitlin during the victory ceremony for the Women's individual pursuit on day four of the 2017 Track Cycling World Championships in Hong Kong on April 15, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Anthony WALLACE (Photo credit should read ANTHONY WALLACE/AFP/Getty Images)
Cycling - UCI Track World Championships - Women's Individual Pursuit, Final - Hong Kong, China – 15/4/17 - Australia's Ashlee Ankudinoff, Chloe Dygert and Kelly Catlin of the U.S. celebrate with medals. REUTERS/Bobby Yip
2016 Rio Olympics - Cycling Track - Victory Ceremony - Women's Team Pursuit Victory Ceremony - Rio Olympic Velodrome - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 13/08/2016.Sarah Hammer (USA) of USA, Kelly Catlin (USA) of USA, Chloe Dygert (USA) of USA and Jennifer Valente (USA) of USA on podium with the silver medals. REUTERS/Matthew Childs FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS.
Jul 22, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Jasmin Glaesser of Canada, Catlin Kelly of the United States and Evelyn Garcia of El Salvador on the medal podium fro the women's cycling individual time trail finals during the 2015 Pan Am Games at Milton Time Trial Course. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 22, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Catlin Kelly of the United States competes in the women's cycling individual time trail finals during the 2015 Pan Am Games at Milton Time Trial Course. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
(L-R) Silver medallist Netherlands' Annemiek van Vleuten, gold medallist US Chloe Dygert and bronze medallist US Kelly Catlin pose on the podium after taking part in the women's individual pursuit final during the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Apeldoorn on March 3, 2018. (Photo by Foto Olimpik/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
HONG KONG, HONG KONG - APRIL 13: The team of USA with Kelly Catlin, Chloe Dygert, Kimberly Geist and Jennifer Valente celebrates winning the Women's Team Pursuit Finals during 2017 UCI World Cycling on April 13, 2017 in Hong Kong, Hong Kong. (Photo by Power Sport Images/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 04: Kelly Catlin (L), Chloe Dygert (2nd L), Sarah Hammer (2nd R) and Jennifer Valente (R) of USA celebrate after winning the Women's Team Pursuit Final during Day Three of the UCI Track Cycling World Championships at Lee Valley Velopark Velodrome on March 4, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - JULY 17: (L-R) Jennifer Valente, Ruth Winder, Sarah Hammer and Kelly Catlin of the United States of America pose with their silver medals in the women's team pursuit cycling track during the 2015 Pan Am Games at the Cisco Milton Pan Am Velodrome on July 17, 2015 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
US Kelly Catlin, US Chloe Dygert, US Sarah Hammer and US Jennifer Valente celebrate after taking gold in the Women's Team Pursuit final during the 2016 Track Cycling World Championships at the Lee Valley VeloPark in London on March 4, 2016 / AFP / Eric FEFERBERG (Photo credit should read ERIC FEFERBERG/AFP/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 04: Sarah Hammer (L), Jennifer Valente (2nd L), Chloe Dygert (2nd R) and Kelly Catlin (R) of USA celebrate their gold medal after winning the Women's Team Pursuit Final during Day Three of the UCI Track Cycling World Championships at Lee Valley Velopark Velodrome on March 4, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
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Christine described her sister as a "special person" who "couldn't say no to everything that was asked of her."

Catlin was recently involved in two serious crashes, first breaking her arm in October before suffering concussion in December.

Her father revealed she first attempted suicide in January as the effects of the injuries took hold and her personality began to change.

"After her concussion, she started embracing nihilism," he said. "Life was meaningless"

"She was not the Kelly that we knew, she spoke like a robot. We could get her to talk, but we wondered, 'what has happened to our Kelly?'," he added.

Catlin was studying at Stamford University for a graduate degree in engineering alongside her cycling training.

She was found dead at her on campus residence at on March 7.

"There was no purpose. This was a person with depression. For her, she could no longer concentrate on her studies or train as hard." her father said.

"She couldn't fulfill what she felt were her obligations to herself, she couldn't live up to her own standards. She couldn't realize that what she needed to do was get away and rest, heal. We were all searching for the magic words, that life was worth living."

Catlin had been open about how difficult it was to balance her career as an elite-level cyclist with her post-graduate studies.

Last month, in a journal for cycling website VeloNews the triple world champion likened it to 'juggling knives'.

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