Missy Franklin


Missy Franklin didn't let a heavy heart slow her down.

The 17-year-old swimmer, already a member of a bronze-winning relay team on Saturday, won the women's 100-meter backstroke today, making her first individual Olympic medal a gold one.

Franklin's fellow athletes, from Michael Phelps to soccer star Abby Wambach all rushed to congratulate the team via Twitter, but the high school student from Aurora, Colo., also must have been thrilled to provide some cheer for her still-grieving hometown.

"Right now, all of my races are dedicated back home to Colorado," Franklin, who will be a senior at Regis Jesuit High School, told the Los Angeles Times last week in the wake of the July 20 shooting at a Dark Knight Rises screening in Aurora that left 12 people dead and 58 injured.

"No matter how well I do, I'm going to give my best in every single race, and every single race, I'm going to have that Colorado incident on my mind."

Happily, Franklin has been radiating good vibes since her arrival in London.

"@TylerClary and I into finals Tom night.... What a sickk double from @FranklinMissy !!! Congrats!!" tweeted Phelps, who won a silver medal yesterday, but unlike Franklin, has not earned a gold in these summer games yet.

That "sick double" referred to the fact that Franklin's golden swim came less than 15 minutes after she qualified for tomorrow's 200-meter freestyle final.

"congrats!!! @FranklinMissy on winning gold. So proud. I'm a big fan. #1stofmany," tweeted Wambach.

"Man @FranklinMissy killed it tonight! Awesome swim! And she did exactly what she needed to get into the 200fr! Proud of you Missy!" wrote fellow swimmer Dana Vollmer, who set a new world record en route to winning the 100-meter butterfly the other night.

"Huge night for #TeamUSA swimming, insane double for @FranklinMissy," tweeted swimmer Eric Shanteau.

"200 free semi, then turns around 20 mins later & wins the 100 Back. Impressive swim from @FranklinMissy, an incredibly tough young woman!" offered Olympic veteran Summer Sanders.

Franklin called winning gold "indescribable."

"I still can't believe that happened. I don't even know what to think. I saw my parents' reaction on the screen and I just started bawling. I can't even think right now."

And with five races to go, she has five more chances to repeat that very "indescribable" feeling.

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share

We and our partners use cookies on this site to improve our service, perform analytics, personalize advertising, measure advertising performance, and remember website preferences. By using the site, you consent to these cookies. For more information on cookies including how to manage your consent visit our Cookie Policy.