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Bill Johnson update: health has ‘improved tremendously’

Bill Johnson

Bill Johnson has “improved tremendously” since ending treatment for an infection attacking all his organs two weeks ago, his mother told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

“I do believe the infection has been combatted and he’s doing fine,” D.B. Johnson-Cooper told the AP in a telephone interview.

Johnson, 53, the 1984 Olympic Alpine skiing champion in the downhill, was hospitalized June 29 with a fever and an infection. Doctors were unable to locate the source of the infection, Johnson-Cooper has said. Two weeks ago Johnson chose to discontinue life-saving methods -- such as supplemental oxygen and antibiotics, according to the AP.

Johnson has lost the use of muscles to support his body, but can move a few fingers on his left hand.

“He is just getting tired of being hooked up to things,” Johnson-Cooper wrote two weeks ago.

Johnson left the hospital to return to Gresham Regency Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Oregon, where he was living before the hospitalization.

Johnson became the first U.S. man to capture an Olympic Alpine skiing gold medal when he followed through on a prediction to win the downhill in Sarajevo in 1984.

He attempted a comeback for the 2002 Olympics that ended with a crash that caused brain damage. Johnson then had a stroke in 2010.

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