August 2nd, 2012

Letters From London: Family Pride

Caroline Burckle

Staff Reporter

Letters From London: Family Pride
photo from Caroline Burckle

A re-cap of the finals and all that makes an Olympian

What a NIGHT last night! As I sit here with my coffee, I am reflecting on what it means to be an Olympian. I found this quote the other day and I find it to hold so incredibly true. Really puts into perspective WHAT the games are about.

“It is the inspiration of the Olympic Games that drives people not only to compete but to improve, and to bring lasting spiritual and moral benefits to the athlete and inspiration to those lucky enough to witness the athletic dedication."

    - Herb Elliott (Australian middle-distance Runner)

It is a once in a lifetime experience to be a part of something of this magnitude, but even more so, it is something to prove to yourself how far you've come and how much effort and dedication has been put toward this.

That being said, I am completely in shock right now at how amazing a performance my little brother gave here. Not only did he make the USA team, he made the finals in what was arguably the most stacked, fastest, and tightest event in the men's side of competition. Hands down.

Yeah, some people may only pay attention to a medal, but when you're down to the wire, and it's anyone's race, it's really everyone's own version of their medal. Clark's was his grit. His will. His focus. His competitive nature, non-complacency, and love for the sport. His endless and uncountable hours of training in the pool got him there. Shoot, not to talk down about myself, but I medaled in a relay, yes. But an individual event; to make the FINAL? That is so inspiring to me, and just as that quote states, it brought inspiration to me, because I was lucky enough to witness what that dedication brought to him! I couldn't be more proud!

Another nostalgic, bittersweet moment was the women’s gold medal winning relay (4x200) last night! This was the relay that I was a part of in Beijing that took the Bronze, and it was so exciting to watch from the outside. What an incredible foursome of girls: my Beijing roomie Schmitty, Missy, Shannon, and my roommate during her year at the University of Florida Dana Vollmer. A dynamic group of girls who brought home a win for America! Proud to be a part of that legacy as well.

Well, that's it for the Griswolds! Celebration and touring continues around London, and tomorrow, Clark got my parents, Collin and I tickets into the Athlete Village for a visit. So pumped. I'll keep you guys posted about that!

Cheers mates! (Yes they say that here, thought that was just Australia?) Talk to you all soon.


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