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Connie Mom: Everyone Can Be Olympic Hero
2008-07-24 17:44:06     CRIENGLISH.com

She is a lovely American woman who exudes warmth and kindness. She is a renowned speech coach in China, and her students have won many medals in CCTV Cup speech competitions. She is one of the many international friends who is experiencing and relishing the Olympic atmosphere in China. CRI reporter Yang Yang just had an inspiring talk with her about the Olympic Games.

Reporter:

"Hi, I am Connie Mom Gibson from Jiangxi Normal University in Jiangxi in China. I want to congratulate all the Olympic athletes who are going to participate in Olympics in Beijing in August of 2008. Good wishes! Congratulations! And I want to welcome everybody from all over the world to come and join the activities here in China because their arms and their hearts are open to you."

Connie Gibson came to China about eight years ago. She is currently an English teacher in east China. Since she loves her students as dearly as her own children, her students show their love for her by calling her "Connie mom".

During the past few years, Connie mom has been to various Chinese cities as a coach and judge for different kinds of speech competitions. She has witnessed great changes in China, especially as it prepares for the 2008 Olympic Games.

"I think if you look at where China has come from and you see what she is today, she has changed much more and much faster than most of the country ever have in the short given period of time. And I think there is still a long way to go in many aspects. China is a huge country."

Connie Gibson, an English teacher at Jiangxi Normal University, has been the judge of CCTV Cup English Speaking Contest for many years. She shows photos in her Bible during an interview from CRI's reporters. [Photo: CRIENGLISH.com]

Hosting the Olympic Games not only stimulates development in a country, it also brings people from all over the world together. The Olympics is a time to share, exchange culture, and forge bonds by reaching out to others.

More importantly, the Olympic spirit is there for people around the globe to be a part of. Connie mom has a special fondness for the Paralympic Games, which she thinks is a fitting tribute to its courageous participants.

"I just have a heart warming feeling for those young men and women who have been handicapped in someway or disadvantaged in someway. How they overcome their disabilities and their disadvantages with positive attitudes and hard work pursuing excellence and it shows us what each of us as normal people could and should be able to do."

Connie mom recalled an experience of meeting a group of Paralympic players coming home from a competition in a Chinese airport many years ago. At that time she received an award and the players also won many medals. They showed the awards to each other, talking happily to each other and enjoying each others' company.

While telling us about this real-life story, Connie mom's eyes glittered. She said she was deeply touched by these men and women in wheelchairs. They have overcome great difficulties and put every ounce of effort in their body in their soul to be the best they can. She is very proud of these players who have served China and served the world through the Olympics.

"That's just very exciting to me because I am trying to teach my students that it doesn't matter whether you are in Beijing or whether you are in Nanchang or whether you are in Africa or America or Iceland, you can pursue to be your best and be excellent and people all around the world will see your excellence."

Connie mom considers the Olympics as just one of the platforms excellent people all round the world use to be the best they can be. She always tells her students everyone can be an Olympic hero no matter what they do or where they are.

As a matter of fact, she herself is trying to be one. When Connie mom first came to China years ago, she received teaching job offers from big cities such as Beijing and Shanghai. However, she declined it politely and decided to stay in Nanchang, a relatively less developed city in China.

Even today, she doesn't have any regrets. She wants to teach her students that it's not about the place one is in or the disadvantages one might have, the power to success lies in one's heart and mind. By remembering that, everyone can become an Olympic hero in real life.

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