After Taking Wrong Bus to Venue, Jamaica Gold Medalist Thanks Stranger Who Paid Cab Fare to Ensure He Made His Race
The Jamaican hurdler Hansle Parchment won gold in the men’s 110-meter hurdles final at the Tokyo Olympics in a major upset of the reigning world champion, Team USA’s Grant Holloway.
The 31-year-old athlete nearly missed the race when he got on the wrong bus and found himself at an aquatics center rather than a track just before the event was set to begin. He reached out to the Olympics officials who told him his only option was to head back to the Olympic Village and take a different bus to the correct venue, which meant he would miss out on time to warm up or, even worse, miss the race entirely.
Then, Parchment ran into a stranger that ultimately helped him win a gold medal.
Olympics volunteer Tijana Stojkovic defied the strict regulations that would have prevented her from helping when she gave Parchment money to take a taxi to the stadium. Thanks to her kindness, he arrived at the correct venue with enough time to prepare for the race.
After winning gold, Parchment retraced his steps to find Stojkovic and thank her for her help. Two days later, Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness posted a video to Twitter that shows Parchment expressing his gratitude and saying Stojkovic was “instrumental in getting me to the final that day.” He then handed her his gold medal and gifted her with a yellow Team Jamaica shirt and paid her back for the cab fare.
After the clip went viral, the Jamaican government went a step further and invited Stojkovic to their country as another display of appreciation.
Image source: The Guardian