After the shocking and unexpected loss of her mother, Joannie Rochette became an Olympic champion last night, Feb. 26!
Joannie Rochette, the whole world, but especially your mom, is so proud of you for winning the bronze medal and being a picture of courage and determination!
Just four days after Therese Rochette, 55, had a heart attack and passed away at Vancouver General Hospital, Joannie managed to skate a historic, emotion-filled performance. Through her streaming tears and in front of an awe-struck stadium, she walked away with the third highest score, becoming an symbol of bravery for the entire world.
After she won the bronze medal, the 24-year-old said, “I had to be out there as Joannie the athlete and not the person. It’s not easy at some points. There’s always some moments when emotions take over. But I really tried to be strong to make my mother proud and my father, who was in the stands.”
“When she took to the ice, she looked like the Joannie that we’ve known and grown with,” said Mike Slipchuk, Skate Canada’s director of high performance. “She was as good as she’s been all year. It’s a testament to her that she was able to get herself in the right frame of mind and right mode to go out there and do the clean short program you have to do at the Olympic Games.
Ever gracious and humble, Joannie said, “I don’t see myself as a hero or anything like that.”
Joannie, we disagree! You are an amazing inspiration, and we know that your mom thinks so, too!!
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