Karine Ruby was the first woman to win a gold medal in snowboarding at the Winter Olympics, winning the giant slalom in 1998. She became one of the great racing snowboarders ever, winning six World Championships – giant slalom in 1996 and 2001, parallel giant slalom in 2001, and boardercross in 1997, 2001, and 2003 – and dominated the sport for almost a decade. She won 67 races on the World Cup circuit, taking home 6 overall cups. In 2002, returned to the Winter Olympics to earn a silver medal in the parallel giant slalom. She switched exclusively to boardercross in 2004. In 2008 she began training to become a mountain guide. In late May 2009, near the end of her training, she was climbing on Mont Blanc, crossing a glacier on their descent, when she and a man she was tethered to fell into a crevasse and both were killed, despite rescue attempts.