(L-R) Ashton Eaton and Brianne Theisen-Eaton celebrating the announcement of expecting their first child on Sept. 4, 2019.
As unofficial titles go, “World’s Greatest Athlete” is a pretty good one, one that decathlete Ashton Eaton earned twice at the Olympic Games and twice at the world championships.
But how about “World’s Greatest Dad” for a title? Well that may be even better.
Eaton is about to find out as he announced on social media Wednesday that he and wife Brianne Theisen-Eaton — herself an Olympic medalist heptathlete for Team Canada — are expecting their first child.
“(Brianne) and I are expecting our first ‘spacenaut’ (nickname after seeing it through ultrasound) to arrive on Earth in early February,” Eaton wrote. “We feel the same excitement and nervousness we did when toeing the line at the @Olympics! Ready for the adventure.”
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Eaton and Theisen-Eaton met as student-athletes at the University of Oregon and got engaged in 2011. They were both a little busy the next year competing at the Olympic Games London 2012, so they had their wedding in July 2013. The next month, Eaton won his first decathlon world championship, adding that gold medal to the one he had won in London a year prior.
Eaton, from Bend, Oregon, went on to win another world title in 2015, setting a world record in the process, and then defended his Olympic gold medal in Rio with an Olympic-record performance in 2016. Theisen-Eaton won her first Olympic medal in heptathlon at those Games. Then, both 28 years old and in the prime of their athletic lives, decided to call it a career. Eaton retired having not lost a decathlon he finished from 2012 to 2016.
Now Eaton, 31, and Theisen-Eaton, 30, will soon again be putting multiple skills and capacities to work, just not in a track and field stadium.
Todd Kortemeier is a sportswriter, editor and children’s book author from Minneapolis. He is a contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.