19-year-old gymnast, Suni Lee, was the first Hmong-American to represent America in the Olympics. In addition to making history, she made headlines when she brought home the gold medal for U.S. women’s gymnastics during the individual all-around competition — finishing with a final score of 57.433.
But will she return and compete in the 2024 Paris Olympics? The gold medalist is speaking out.
Will Suni Lee Make It To The 2024 Paris Olympics?
In a new interview with PEOPLE, the 19-year-old gold medalist admits she is taking it “day by day” in regards to if she plans to return for the 2024 Paris Olympics.
“I don’t know. Yeah, I’m still making a decision,” Lee said. “I’m definitely starting to take it day by day, just trying to figure out what I want to do, and yeah, hopefully.”
Suni Lee is currently competing for Auburn University. “College has been amazing. It’s been super fun,” she explained. “Having teammates, being somewhat normal is absolutely amazing. I mean, I’m not used to it, so it’s definitely been a transition.”
Suni Lee Is an Inspiration To Others
Although she is only 19 years old, Suni Lee is already a role model for so many girls around the world — something that Lee will never take for granted.
“That’s kind of the goal, I think, to be an inspiration to others,” she said. “And because growing up, I never really had somebody that looked like me, I guess, competing at the Olympics, and it’s great to be somebody that can make such a big impact on others.”
As the first Hmong-American to represent America in the Olympics, the 19-year-old feels it is just the beginning of more equality in sports.
“I definitely think this is just the beginning,” she said. “We’re just finally starting to break through I almost feel like. So I think in the future, women are going to be greater than ever and it’s exciting to see.”
Reflecting Back On Suni Lee’s Gold Medal Win
After Suni Lee won the gold in the Tokyo Olympics, she made headlines all around the world. Although she made it look easy, she was extremely nervous as all eyes were on her to deliver the performance of her life.
“I was just telling myself to do nothing more and nothing less, and just telling myself to breathe because in that moment I literally felt like I was going to puke, I was so nervous,” she told The Today Show at the time. “My normal is good enough, so I don’t do anything more or anything less, I just have to do what I normally do.”
Just recently, Lee celebrated one year of being an Olympian, taking to Instagram to share, “a year ago today, my life changed forever,” along with photos from the Tokyo Olympics.
“I am so grateful for all of the crazy opportunities that this moment has given me. I’m so incredibly grateful to everyone who has supported me, cheered me on as I chased after my goals, and helped me through some of the toughest moments of my life. I’m proud of the commitment I made to myself to never stop dreaming,” she continued. “To the little girl who practiced on a homemade balance beam and believed that nothing was impossible: you were right. I’ll forever be an olympian.”