When an image of athlete Allison Stokke hit the internets and went viral in 2007, the high school pole vaulter could never have imagined the events that would unfold defining her life over the next decade. Sadly, while all intentions directed at Stokke seemed innocent, even positive, the fervor over her photo centered on her looks, not her talents. She was and still is, a talented athlete, something she worked with dedication to achieve. Her looks, she inherited. Along with good genetics, it seems Stokke was also destined for a lot of unwanted [read: scary] attention. In case you’re worried, this story has a happy ending, but the trail was not an easy path for Stokke to walk… er, vault.
25. High School
When Allison Stokke was a senior in high school, it was 2007. She competed with passion in her track event of choice: pole vaulting. Stokke happened to be an attractive young woman, a fact captured in a photo taken by a journalist for a California-based track and field website. The picture went viral, shared thousands of times over, dragging Stokke into a mess before anyone could do anything about it.
24. Allison Rebecca Stokke
Born into an athletic family, on March 22, 1989, to parents Cindy and Allan Stokke, Allison was child number two. She had an older brother named David, who competed as a gymnast. He was good too, a national level competitor. Allison, at one time, considered following in big bro’s footsteps, but after a short bout with gymnastics, she decided it wasn’t for her. She picked up the pole vault early in high school, and by age 15 Allison became one of the country’s best vaulters. She won a U.S. title and set a 12.5-foot vault record.