Bode Miller, Morgan Beck open up on drowning of their daughter, advocate for other parents


Bode Miller and Morgan Beck Miller are still mourning the loss of their 19-month-old daughter, Emeline, but in doing so, they are also advocating for parents to be aware of just how likely a drowning death can be.

As Morgan wrote on Instagram earlier this month, the No. 1 leading cause of death for children ages 1-4 is drowning. So that's what the Millers most want to emphasize in sharing their story.

"It's the number one way that you could potentially lose your kid," Bode said on the "Today" show on Monday alongside his wife. "If it's number one for me, I want to know about it. I've been to all the pediatrician meetings and checkups on our kids ... I can't say it's come up one time. Not a single time."

Emeline, of course was found by Morgan in a swimming pool on June 10.

The Millers still keep Emeline's room just the way it was before her death, as "Today" documented. And it's to remind the couple both of their daughter and their mission.

"It's an obligation, to some degree," said Bode, who has two kids with Morgan and is a five-time Olympic medalist in alpine skiing. "I think it does, in some way, help to heal a little bit, (and) maybe we're preventing it from happening to somebody else."

Morgan, who said parents should be "hyper aware" of the dangers of drowning, also recalled the day the Millers lost their daughter.

"Every morning, the kids would go swimming," she said, "and Bode would go swimming with them, and they would be in there for hours, and they loved it."

But on the day they lost Emeline, she continued, Bode had taken his oldest daughter to a softball game. Emeline, meanwhile, tagged along with Morgan for visits with friends and grandparents, then played with other kids at the next-door neighbor's house.

"Emmy would go back and forth, which was all of 15 feet," she said. "And all of a sudden, it was just too quiet for me. We were amid conversation, and I stood up ... I said, 'Where's Emmy?' And before (one of the other children) could respond, I turned around and the door that leads to the backyard that was closed had this tiny sliver of light ... and my heart sank."

Bode, meanwhile, heard "all of this through the phone" from the softball game, and he was "just in shock."

"There's not a day that goes by that I don't pray for the opportunity to go back to that day and make it different," Morgan said. "But now we have this opportunity to make other parents' days different."

Our Latest Stories