A group of about 20 kids from the Girls and Boys Clubs of the Midlands had a chance to wear real Olympic gold medals Friday at the Aquazone inside CenturyLink Center Omaha.
Josh Davis, who won three gold medals in Atlanta in 1996 and two silver medals is Sydney in 2000, met with the young swimmers and brought along his Olympic hardware. The kids also got to have their picture taken with the Olympic champion.
“It was really heavy,” said 11-year-old Daniel Silva. “Well it wasn't really heavy, but it was actual gold.”
Fourteen-year-old Emma Clausen was also impressed by the medals. “It was a little heavy at the beginning, but then I felt like, cool to wear a gold medal.”
The kids are all part of the Michael Phelps IM Swim Program that helps children in poverty learn how to swim. Davis hopes his story can inspire these kids to do their best in whatever they do.
“I swam really fast getting the gold medals,” said Davis. “Four years later I swam even faster getting the silver medal. So [the silver] is actually my favorite medal because I swam faster. I did my best. So it's important to remember what makes you a champion isn't necessarily the time or the place, but that you made your best effort. If you do that every day you're going to be a champion."
The kids each got their own medal to take home. Although the ones they got to keep were not made out of gold.
The Boys and Girls Clubs of the Midlands have been bringing a different group of kids to the CenturyLink Center every day during the swim trials.