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How Salt Lake City Olympics Inspired a Generation of Team USA Athletes

Devin Logan

The 2018 U.S. Olympic Team is stacked with athletes who watched the 2002 Games closely, wondering if and hoping that one day they too would represent their country at the highest level.

When Salt Lake City hosted the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, halfpipe snowboarder Kelly Clark won a gold medal in her Olympic debut. On the other side of the country in West Dover, Vermont, an 8-year-old Devin Logan watched her hometown hero compete.

“I know we can watch [the Olympic Games] from afar,” Clark said. “But when it’s in your home country, it breaks down a little invisible barrier and really inspires the next generation like no other Olympics on foreign soil can.”

Twelve years later, Clark and Logan each won a medal at the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014 — Clark in halfpipe snowboarding and Logan in slopestyle skiing. They have a chance to do the same this month.

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Sportsmanship, Olympics Guest Writer