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Sunisa Lee: 5 Things To Know About The Olympic Gold Medalist

By Kristin Myers
Sunisa Lee holds up a medal at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.
Instagram | sunisalee_

Sunisa Lee: 5 Things To Know About The Olympic Gold Medalist

Sunisa Lee, also known as “Suni” Lee, is an American artistic gymnast. Born in Saint Paul, Minnesota, the five-foot athlete took home the gold at the Women’s All-Around Final.

When it came to the Women’s Uneven Bars Final, Lee placed third, behind Belgium’s Nina Derwael, who took first. Although she admitted her performance “definitely wasn’t the routine i expected to do, but i’m so proud of myself for not giving up. disappointed & sad but beyond blessed to say i’m third in the world on bars.”

Keep reading to find out more about the youngest artistic gymnast representing America in the Tokyo Olympics!

1. She’s Been Competing For A Decade!

Lee performs a split in the air at the Tokyo Olympics.
Instagram | sunisalee_

According to her profile, Lee got into gymnastics because “it was fun and I liked to do flips.” She began gymnastics in 2009, concentrating on her favorite event, the beam.

Her very first national event took place with the 2015 Women’s Junior Olympic Level National Championships in Des Moines, Iowa.

She placed fourth on the uneven bars as part of the Junior A division, but scored first in the All Around at the HOPES Championships in Chicago later that year.

2. She’s Just Out of High School!

Lee wears a cropped pastel shirt with camo beige cargo pants as she shows off her toned middriff.
Instagram | sunisalee_

It might surprise some, but Lee is fresh out of high school!

She attended the South Saint Paul Secondary High School in Minnesota, with a 2021 listed graduation date.

She plans to attend Auburn University, located in the state of Alabama, and has an expected college graduation date of 2025, although she has still yet to declare a major.

3. She Loves 'Harry Potter!'

Lee prepares to do a gymanistic routine for Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics.
Instagram | sunisalee_

Lee has shared a few pop culture trivia bits about herself, including that her favorite book series is “Harry Potter.” She enjoys listening to pop music and going camping and fishing in her spare time.

Her top film is torn between “Finding Nemo” and “Just Go With It,” but “Fuller House” is her favorite TV show right now.

She has also mentioned that science was her favorite subject to study in school, and made herself even more relatable to her fans when she mentioned that pasta was her favorite food!

4. She Has A Close-Knit Family!

Sunisa Lee poses for a photo with three of her teammates from Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics.
Instagram | sunisalee_

Lee has 5 siblings: Shyenne, Jonah, Evionn, Lucky, and Noah. Her parents, Yeev Thok and John Lee, have worked hard to support her through her gymnastic career, although they were unable to attend the Olympic Games in Tokyo to support her in person due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

"I try to be confident for her," her father said in an interview, "but inside there is nerves."

Her father was also an avid athlete growing up, and a fun family video shows the pair doing synchronized backflips off a lounge chair at a Florida beach when Lee was only 8-years-old.

5. She’s The First Hmong American To Compete!

Sunisa Lee looks focused during her performance at the Tokyo Olympics.
Instagram | sunisalee_

Lee became the first Hmong American to ever compete for Team USA when she qualified for the Olympics in June.

Knowing that she could be a role model for others, Lee reportedly “went to the gym every day for all the first-generation Americans who wanted to achieve success when their parents had come to the United States with nothing.”

Even though representing an underrepresented community comes with a lot of pressure, her father remains determined to keep her grounded.

Before her competition in the Tokyo Olympics, he told her, “‘You're not doing this for nobody else anymore. Not for your friends, not for the Hmong community. You are doing this for yourself now. OK?’ He pauses. ‘Enjoy,’ he says. ‘That's your only goal. You got this.’"

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