Andre De Grasse's mom says she thought he used to run track just to get to skip school
The mother of Andre De Grasse, who took home a gold medal in the 200m at the Tokyo Olympics on Wednesday morning, is now reflecting on her son's epic win, and made some revelations about the athlete's history.
Beverly De Grasse was able to speak to press outside of her house in Pickering, Ontario, on Wednesday shortly after talking on the phone with Andre himself, sharing her feelings about the epic performance witnessed by millions around the globe just hours earlier.
Stating that she was "super proud" and "super, super excited," the elder De Grasse added that though she is now well aware of Andre's passion and exceptional sports abilities, in his younger years, she never thought he'd take home an Olympic gold (three days after receiving a bronze in another running event, no less).
She actually thought he just participated in track as a youngster to get some time off school.
"I just told him, 'you want to have a day away from school, that's what you want!' I never thought this would be happening today, like being in the Olympics or anything like that. I just thought he wanted to go skip school and have fun with his friends," she told a scrum of reporters.
"I really never expected anything like this. Even when I spoke to (his coach) Tony Sharpe in the beginning, he's telling me all this talent he sees in my son and I'm like 'What is he talking about?'”
"I just thought he wanted to skip school and have fun with his friends" 😅— Felix (@FelixT2021) August 4, 2021
Andre De Grasse's mom Beverly thought her son just wanted the day off school when he first approached her about running track.#TeamCanada #Tokyo2020 pic.twitter.com/buOKTIx3g0
Canadians nationwide are celebrating De Grasse's win along with his mother, coach and team today, especially those in his hometown of Markham, Ontario, the mayor of which has now declared Aug. 4 to be an official annual day to commemmorate the athlete.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Toronto Mayor John Tory and other big names have in a similar vein taken to social media to congratulate De Grasse, with the latter saying that the Toronto sign will be lit in gold in the runner's honour tonight.
The 26-year-old's time of 19.62 seconds for the 200m sprint set an all-time record for Canada, and got him what is now his fifth Olympic medal in addition to his bronze from Sunday night, and a silver and two more bronzes from the 2016 games in Rio de Janeiro.
His coach, who shed tears of joy as he watched the race, has referred to the gold medalist as a truly good person and "the ultimate role model: kind, respectful and all the things we look for in a young man."
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