Gold Medalist Visits Kids - KFYRTV.COM - Bismarck, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Gold Medalist Visits Kids

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Being in the hospital is no fun and can even be scary for kids who need to undergo surgery. Today, some of those kids got to forget about it for a few moments.

Even for the best athletes, the thought of winning a gold medal can seem out of reach.

"Definitely it was a dream come true for me. I never thought that it would be me. I knew that I was kind of helping pioneer the sport," said Olympic Gold Medalist Stacy Dragila.

The 2000 Sydney Olympics was the first time women could compete in pole vaulting, and she won the first gold medal. Now she's taking some time to inspire kids at Sanford Hospital in Bismarck.

"Hopefully just give them a little bit of hope and let them know my journey. That it wasn't always an easy road for me, to obtain the gold medal. I had to work really hard and had a lot of sacrifices and had to persevere through a lot of things," Dragila said.

Mikayla Lennie, 15, is an athlete herself, playing softball when she can. She said she never thought she would meet an Olympian. "It was, it was really awesome."

Jordan Jans also got to join in the fun. His dad, Dwight, says he's been in the hospital with bronchitis, and it's nice for him to get to do something uplifting.

"I think it's a way to help cheer up the kids and gives the kids something to look forward to as they grow up," Dwight said.

One lucky kid even got to make a special stop to meet the Olympian on the way to surgery and learn what pole vaulting really is.

Dragila is also in town to speak at a young professionals conference tonight.

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