Heather Van Norman is an American former track athlete and coach who is famous for being the mother of Odell Beckham Jr. The son of the six-time NCAA All-American is a football wide receiver who broke records at Louisiana State University before becoming one of the most popular players in the NFL. Odell will forever be remembered for the one-handed touchdown catch he made whilst falling backward during his rookie year in 2014.
Odell has often described his mother as the reason for his success. She was very supportive of his career after seeing her own fade away as a result of her being pregnant for him. Below is more about her.
Heather Van Norman Biography Summary
- Full Name: Heather Van Norman
- Hometown: Windom, Minnesota, United States
- Ethnicity: Mixed
- Nationality: American
- Height: 5 feet 6 inches (168 cm)
- Profession: Former Track Athlete and Coach
- Marital Status: Married
- Spouse: Derek Mills
- Children: Odell Beckham Jr., Jasmine Mills
- Parents: Millie Van Norman, Don Van Norman
- Grandchild: Zydn Beckham
- Instagram: heathervannorman
Heather Van Norman is From Minnesota
Heather Van Norman was born in the city of Windom, Minnesota. While her date of birth is not known, she is believed to have been born sometime in the early 70s. Her parents have been identified as Millie and Don Van Norman. She is of mixed ethnicity but holds American nationality.
She Attended Louisiana State University
It is not exactly clear where Heather attended high school, however, we know that she chose to move to Baton Rouge, Louisiana for college as she enrolled at Lousiana State University. Odell’s mother was a stand-out athlete at LSU. She ran track at the institution and was very good at it.
In 1991, she clinched the NCAA indoor and outdoor titles. 1992 was supposed to be the year she would go on to compete at the Olympics but Heather Van Norman found out she was pregnant with her son and so was unable to make it to the competition. In 1993, she was able to make a comeback to the sport as she won more indoor and outdoor NCAA titles. She captured the indoor and outdoor 4 × 400 m and the outdoor 4 × 100 m relay events.
Heather Van Norman Worked as a Track Coach After College
Following her stellar college athletic career, Heather Van Norman took up coaching jobs. Her first gig is reported to have been at Rice University. She would later join the coaching staff of Georgia Tech as an assistant coach before taking up the head coaching job at Tulane University. Her next job was as the coach of the Nicholls State University track and field team. She, however, resigned from the position in June 2017.
In all the coaching jobs she has had over the years, Van Norman has trained athletes that have gone ahead to achieve great things in life. It is reported that her athletes have cumulatively won more than 15 NCAA titles.
Who is Heather Van Norman’s Husband?
Heather is currently married to Derek Mills. Like her, Derek is a former track athlete. He was famously a part of the U.S Olympic track and field team during the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta where he won a Gold medal for his efforts. Together, the duo have a daughter named Jasmine Mills.
Before Heather and Derek became an item, however, she was with the father of her famous older child. Heather met Odell Beckham Sr during her time at Louisiana State University. Like her, Odell Sr was also an athlete at the school. He played football and was a standout running back from 1989 to 1992. The pair went on to have one child before parting ways.
She Became a Grandmother in 2022
Heather Van Norman became a proud grandmother in 2022 after her famous NFL star son became a father. Odell Beckham Jr and his partner Lauren Wood welcomed a son named Zayn on February 17, 2022. Heather took to Instagram a few weeks later to show off her grandchild, quoting Bible scriptures as she made sure to tell everybody she was grateful to God for the baby.
Odell and his mother have maintained a very good relationship throughout his life and Heather would be hoping to have an even better relationship with her grandchild. The mother-son relationship was detailed in Catching Odell, a 2015 documentary that gave an insight into Odell’s life off the field.