Truck Driver's Daughter Captures First Gold Medal in Sydney

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Truck Driver's Daughter Captures First Gold Medal in Sydney

"My daughter made it! Oh, I'm so pround of you, my daughter! After all those years, you made it through!"
Yoon Mi-jin's house in Suwon was full of excitement and tears on the afternoon of Sept. 19. Yoon's mother Kim Kyung-hee could not stop her tears as she watched her 17-year-old daughter Mi-jin winning the gold medal in women's archery, the first gold for Korea at the Sydney games.
"I couldn't even fix her breakfast the day she left for Sydney, because I had to go to work. But, she made it by herself! I'm so proud of her."
Mi-jin's father, Yoon Chang-duk, who drives trucks for a living, could not join the excitement with his family in front of the television. A day's pay was just too important to his poor family. Mi-jin's father was working at a construction site as usual when his daughter won the gold medal.
"I just couldn't see my baby girl competing against other athletes by herself in a far-off foreign land. Oh, how I wished I had enough money to support her."
Meanwhile, Kyonggi Athlete's High School, of which Mi-jin is a student, was full of excitement. When Mi-jin was confirmed as the gold medalist, the teachers cheered and her classmates hugged each other, overwhelmed with joy.
"I've always been so proud of Mi-jin," said Chang Hyo-jun, vice-principal of the school. "She is a person of strong will. She's been doing her best in her training, and getting good grades in her courses too."

by Jung Chang-min

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