The final Citi Field Kids program of 2012 season was indeed a golden one, as 2012 Olympic gold medalist Gabrielle Douglas came in to inspire 150 children from the YMCA of greater New York. The Citi Field Kids program, started in 2009 has been a part of a series on in-season events teaching students the nine values and ideals of Jackie Robinson.
“Citi is delighted to welcome Gabrielle Douglas to Citi Field Kids and we congratulate her on an amazing performance in London that made the entire country proud,” said Billy Cho, Citibank Area Director, New York City.
Both Citi and the Mets have rolled out the red carpet, bringing in such great athletes like Jake Ballard, John Franco, Kari Miller and R.A. Dickey to help teach and inspire students from the New York City middle and high schools to aspire to their dreams.
Playing Master of Ceremonies for the event was SNY anchor and reporter Michelle Yu, who in herself serves as an inspiration beating the odds in becoming a female journalist in the world of sports.
The final edition was no different, registering a 10 even for the toughest judge, as Douglas continues to sparkle by sharing her inspiring story of dedication, courage and commitment.
Douglas, who at the age of 14 decided to leave her home of Virginia and her family to train with elite coach Liang Chow in West De Moines, Iowa. Through dedication, hard work and even battling through severe injury Gabrielle made history in London by becoming the first American gymnast to win gold in both the individual all-around and team competitions at the same Olympics.
“I wanted to be able to tell everyone my story in the hopes that it will inspire them to achieve their dreams,” said Douglas in a press conference held after the Citi Field Kids program. “I wanted to be able to tell people that no matter what obstacles come your way to never give up and know that the sacrifices that they make are not in vain.”
Douglas told her story and gave a very important message to all of the Citi Fields Kids in attendance.
“Don’t ever doubt yourself and know that the only thing that can stop you is you,” said the two-time gold medalist. “Always believe in yourself, trust in yourself and trust in your coaches and the positive people in your life as they will always have your best interest in mind.”
On the positive response she has gotten from fans thus far Douglas had this to say, “it is so important to have those who love you behind you. I love it whenever I hear people say that, ‘I was behind you the whole time’ and to have that means a lot to me.”
The message that was given not only by Douglas, but all of the great participants of the Citi Field Kids program was something that is appreciated by everyone involved-and hopefully everyone involved will be inspired to achieve their dreams and go for the gold.
Fans of 1495 Sports are encouraged to check out our official photo gallery below:
Make sure to check out 1495 Sports TV for a video look from the day and thoughts from Douglas herself: