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'RIP sweet creature': Gus Kenworthy mourns death of puppy he rescued at the Olympics

The Olympic freestyle skier has been receiving uplifting messages from fans after his heartbreaking loss.
/ Source: TODAY

Skier Gus Kenworthy has said a heartbreaking goodbye to Beemo, the adorable dog he rescued from a meat farm in South Korea during the Winter Olympics in February.

On Saturday, the Olympic freestyle skiing champion posted on Twitter and Instagram that Beemo died two days earlier after a heart issue caused by a birth defect. Plenty of fans have since responded with uplifting messages.

"Beemo was truly the best thing that ever happened to me and I feel so fortunate for our borrowed time together,'' Kenworthy wrote. "I've never loved anything or anyone in the way that I loved that dog and she is and will always be deeply missed."

Kenworthy and his boyfriend, Matt Wilkas, were stunned by Beemo's deteriorating condition after taking the dog to a veterinarian when she was not eating her food. The veterinarian discovered that the dog's "heart was too big for her body" due to a birth defect.

"It all happened so fast that it's still hard to believe it,'' the skier wrote. "The ER doc told us that even if we'd somehow spotted the issue earlier it wouldn't have made a difference in the end. He said that she'd been living on 'borrowed time' from the get go."

Beemo had become a beloved part of Kenworthy's life and even had her own Instagram account with over 130,000 followers. After he had some fun at a raccoon cafe while in Pyeongchang for the Winter Olympics, he found Beemo during a distressing visit to a dog meat farm outside Seoul.

He frequently posted pictures of the two of them together since returning home with her from South Korea.

"She was the kindest, most gentle soul I've ever known,'' he wrote. "If any of you have pets up in doggy heaven please tell them to go find Bee because she could really use a good play date right now. RIP sweet creature - your daddy loves you more than you could ever even know!"

Kenworthy's fans responded with their own experiences of losing pets and uplifting messages about Beemo.

Kenworthy has been a noted dog lover since he adopted a group of stray dogs, including three puppies, that he fell in love with during his time at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russiam where he also won a silver medal.

Follow writer Scott Stump on Twitter.