The parents of very young children play a crucial role in their development, never leaving their side for those precious years. That wasn’t the case for the unfortunate Montannah Kenney, though, as her father died just days after she turned three in 2013. However, five years later she honored his memory by attempting Africa’s toughest challenge.
Montannah and her mom Hollie live in Austin, Texas, where Hollie, a former triathlete, now runs her own triathlon coaching business. Tragedy struck the family in 2013 when Montannah’s dad passed away a week after the little girl’s third birthday. At the time of his death, Montannah’s dad was undergoing eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy, better known as EMDR, a treatment for survivors of trauma.
However, Montannah didn’t forget about her father in the following years, as she often spoke about him with her mom. “We’ve always talked about her dad being in heaven, and we always talk about her dad being above the clouds – that’s where heaven is,” 45-year-old Hollie said in an interview with weather.com in April 2018. “And I think mountains are very intriguing to her because a lot of them are above [the clouds].”