LGBT, Local Athletes Shine at Rio 2016 Olympics

The 2016 Olympics in Rio De Jineiro have been an amazing spectacle in sport and pizzazz. Not only have the athletes competed at a high level, but the LGBT community has seen many of their own community members thrive in the spotlight.

This year, many countries sent athletes who identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community, including the United States! The rainbow colors of the Olympic Rings took on a new meaning this year.

 The first Gold Medal won by Brazil was earned by openly lesbian judo star Rafaela Silva. She took home the top prize after coming out on August 10th to a popular magazine during an interview. What a great accomplishment for Silva, Brazil and the LGBTQ+ community!

Along with Judo, the queer community also represented at swimming, with Rachel Bruni of Italy earning a Silver Medal in the 10K marathon! She may have swam far, but she took queer visibility even further with this great showing.

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Lastly, British diver and openly gay man Tom Daley took home another Bronze Medal this year. By winning third in synchronized diving, this gay role model added to his tally that began in London 2012, where he took home Bronze in an individual event. Go Tom!

Although the Olympics are over, we don't have to wait two years to see fantastic LGBT athletes competing. They are in action all over the country and the world, showing that queer people can compete with anyone in any sport. 

In addition to queer people, local Tulare County athletes also made showings at this year's Olympics. Deajah Stevens, an alumnus of the College of Sequoias in Visalia, made it to the finals in the 200m in Rio, finishing 7th overall! 

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