NANJING, China--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games (YOG) has been filled not only with exciting competition but heartwarming moments as well. The Games’ unique events involving mixed teams from different National Olympic Committees (NOC) has created many opportunities for touching displays of sportsmanship and cooperation.
In the -100kg Judo event, for example, Ramin Safaviyeh of Iran was injured on the way to winning the gold medal. Later during the medal ceremony, he struggled to stand and was supported by the bronze medalist from Germany, Domenik Schonefeldt.
One bittersweet moment occurred on the eighth day of the YOG at the Athletics event in the Nanjing Olympic Sports Centre. After winning the gold in the Men’s 400m final, Martin Manley of Jamaica ripped off his number and turned it toward the television cameras to reveal the name of his former teammate, Cavahn McKenzie. McKenzie died unexpectedly during a 6k athletics event in Tobago in February of 2014.
The memory of his late friend has been a driving force for Manley’s running success. “Every time I run, I remember him,” said Manley. “I used it as an inspiration. If I could say one thing to him, R.I.P: return if possible.”
Team South Africa managed to win the hearts of the citizens of Nanjing with its actions off the field. Panayiotis Stais, father of the team’s Equestrian representative, Alexa, saved the life of a local woman who had fallen in the Qinhuai river. Stais, 54, was having lunch at the Confucius Temple when he saw that someone had fallen in the river and jumped to the rescue.
At a press conference, Stais was presented with an official engraved certificate to commemorate his efforts. “There was also a form of monetary reward which I asked the local authorities to donate to one of the local charities,” said Stais.
When asked about her father’s heroic actions, Alexa Stais said that she was not surprised at all. She was later seen sporting the words “I love Nanjing 2014” in Chinese on her arm as she prepared for her Equestrian event which wrapped up on Sunday.
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