This week, Stittsville was buzzing with the news that “fresh-off-the-podium” Olympic gold-medalist and athlete, Erica Wiebe was in town!
Erica arrived Tuesday morning at the Ottawa International Airport to a crowd of eager supporters. I was pleased to be among them to greet her along with Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Marianne Wilkinson.
From there, my team jumped immediately into planning for Thursday’s Homecoming Reception at the Goulbourn Recreation Complex (GRC), where a crowed of over 400 came out to congratulate and meet their Olympic Champion. We were joined by Mayor JWatson and Councillor Wilkinson. With the support of Mayor Watson I had the distinct privilege to announce that the gym in the GRC will be named the Erica Wiebe Gym in recognition of her accomplishment at the 2016 Olympic Games.
This is an ideal honour fitting for an incredibly-talented athlete such as Erica.
The Goulbourn Recreation Complex is just beside Sacred Heart High School where Erica spent the formative years of her life developing her love of wrestling. The gym is a second home to many impressionable future-Olympians involved in the broad range of summer camps between school years.
It is my hope that the Erica Wiebe Gym will inspire many more young athletes in their pursuits to shoot for gold as Erica has – that they will work hard, play harder, and always remember to keep a shining and optimistic attitude throughout whatever challenges lie ahead. To coin a phrase by Erica herself, “We are defined by the accumulation of each day we spend in pursuit of our goals, rather than the day we achieve them.”
I would like to thank all residents who were able to join us in making Erica feel the pride we shared when she represented Canada at the Olympic Games. She was deeply touched – as was I – in bearing witness to what a supportive community we have.