Eric Radford becomes first openly gay athlete to win gold at Winter Olympics

Feb. 12 (UPI) — Canadian figure skater Eric Radford said he ‘might explode with pride’ after becoming the first openly gay man to ever win a gold medal at the Winter Olympics.

Radford was part of the Canadian figure skating team’s win in the mixed team final. Meagn Duhamel, Kaetlyn Osmond, Patrick Chan, Scott Moir, Tessa Virtue and Gabrielle Daleman were also on the winning squad.

“This is amazing! I literally feel like I might explode with pride. #Olympics #outandproud,” Radford tweeted in a response to a tweet saying he was the first openly gay man to ever win a gold medal at the Winter Games.

An Olympic Athletes from Russia squad of Alina Zagitova, Ekaterina Bobrova, Mikhail Kolyada, Vladimir Morozov, Evgeniya Medvedeva, Natalya Zabiyako, Aleksandr Enbert, Evgeniya Tarasova and Dmitriy Soloviev won silver at the event on Monday, while Team USA claimed the bronze medal.

Adam Rippon — who is also openly gay — was part of an American squad that included: Chris Knierim, Alex Shibutani, Mirai Nagasu, Nathan Chen, Bradie Tennell, Maia Shibutani and Alexa Scimeca Knierim. NBC commentator Johnny Weir announced that Rippon was the first openly gay athlete from the United States to medal at the Winter Games, according to NBC.

“So proud that @Adaripp [Rippon] and I get to wear these medals and show the world what we can do,” Radford tweeted Monday. “#represent #olympics #pyeongchang2018 #pride #outandproud #medalists #TeamNorthAmerica.”

Rippon comments on the post with a series of emojis, including three hearts and two medals.

Radford and teammate Meagan Duhamel partnered to win the pairs free skate program. They performed their winning routine to Adele’s Hometown Glory.

The 33-year-old figure skater also won a silver medal at the 2014 Sochi Games. There are 14 publicly out LGBTQ athletes at the 2018 Winter Games, according to Out Sports.

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