American Elephants

Olympians: From the Winter Olympics, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2002 by The Elephant's Child

A large group of Olympians from Team USA, 2002 spoke about their experience in the Winter Olympics. It was not long after 9/11 and the nation was still reeling from the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center.The Salt Lake Olympics were a shambles of scandal, mismanagement and financial failure that threatened to cancel the games and damage the Olympic Games program itself.The athletes thought all their years of training might go to waste, but Mitt Romney pulled it together, corralled hundreds of smiling young LDS volunteers who made every attendee feel welcome.

Mitt made it all work and gave the athletes their chance to compete. Remember the “Miracle on Ice”when the  new kids on the block defeated the Russian team. Couldn’t find a video of the whole Team USA medal winners, but Derek Parra, a 5’4” Mexican American kid from Southern California talked a bit about his background and how unlikely it was that he should become a champion speed skater. He called Mitt Romney a “Facilitator of Dreams.”

Parra set world records, and won the gold in the 1500 meters and silver in the 5000 meters.  He went on to become the coach for the U.S. Olympic speed skating team for the 2010 Olympics.

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