A bitter family feud has erupted between the estranged parents of Olympic sweetheart GABBY DOUGLAS over the millions she stands to earn, sources say.
The bad blood centers on lucrative endorsement deals that are expected to bring in $10 million over the next few years and upward of $100 million over Gabby’s lifetime.
“Both sides of Gabby’s family are jockeying to be in good standing with the goose that laid the golden egg,” a close source told The ENQUIRER. “Meanwhile, poor Gabby is caught in the middle.”
Ever since the “Flying Squirrel”, 16, catapulted into the spotlight with Olympic gold medals in the gymnastics team and individual all-around competitions, shocking details about her family life have emerged.
As The ENQUIRER reported, her father Timothy Douglas was arrested in February for contributing to the delinquency of a minor. He pleaded no contest and has one year to complete a state-mandated parenting course to avoid jail.
The incident occurred less than two weeks after Gabby’s mom, Natalie Hawkins, filed for divorce from Douglas, 46.
“I’m trying to keep things positive right now,” Douglas – who served more than 17 years with the Virginia Air National Guard including being deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan – told The ENQUIRER. “I feel like I’ve been the best father that I can be to my daughter and to my family.”
But the family feud boiled over while Gabby competed.
“Gabby’s dad took relatives to London to see her compete, but she didn’t have tickets to get them into the events,” said the source. “They had to watch a lot of her competitions on TV monitors outside.”
Gabby’s paternal grandmother May Douglas added: “We don’t know how many tickets were given, and how they were given, we only know they were not given to us.”
Another source said: “Timothy and his family suspect Natalie had everything to do with them not being able to gain access to Gabby’s competitions, and they’re furious about being cut out!”