Suni Lee became the latest American woman to win gold in the Olympic gymnastics individual all-around contest in Tokyo after stepping into the spotlight after Simone Biles withdrew to focus on her mental health.
The 18-year-old Lee is the fifth consecutive — and sixth overall — American woman to win the title of Olympic all-around champion. The exclusive club includes Mary Lou Retton, Carly Patterson, Nastia Liukin, Gabby Douglas and Simone Biles. Lee was also the first Hmong American to compete at an Olympics, and now, the first gold medalist.
“Keeping dreaming big and never give up because you never know where your dreams will take you,” Lee said about being a role model for young girls who look up to her.
In the emotional final, Lee was rock-solid in every outing, outlasting Brazil’s Rebeca Andrade.
In addition to all-around gold, she earned bronze on the uneven bars and silver in the team event.
“I really want to be an inspiration to others and I want to help others reach their dreams,” Lee told reporters.