The 2016 Summer Olympics held in Brazil are long gone, but their legacy lives on.
This past Thursday, the amazing athletes of the United States Olympic and Paralympic teams were able to celebrate their achievements once again, in a ceremony held at the White House.
The festivities honored this year’s athletes and also paid tribute to those from the past who did not receive acknowledgement for their achievements when they should have. This included Jesse Owens, whose relatives attended the event, and America’s 17 other black athletes from the 1936 Olympics who did not receive congratulations from Franklin Roosevelt 80 years ago, while their white counterparts did.
Some of this year’s more memorable Olympic feats included the first gold on the vault ever for an American women, won by Simone Biles, and the first African American women to win gold in swimming, Simone Manuel.
Biles is also the only American to ever win four gold medals in gymnastics in a single Games.
Other notable memories include Katie Ledecky winning four gold medals in swimming, Michael Phelps announcing his retirement and winning his 28th Olympic medal, and the women’s team winning the 4 x 100 m relay even after being knocked into by Brazil in the heats, causing Allyson Felix to drop the baton.
The United States ranked number one among all competing countries at the 2016 summer Games, winning a total of 46 gold medals.
The 2020 Olympic Summer Games are set to take place in Tokyo. The Japanese mega-city won the honor over other applicants Istanbul and Madrid.