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Filipino Pride: List of Summer Olympic Medalists

1 August 2021
Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists

Tokyo 2020 Olympics became a remarkable event in Philippine history. After 97 years, the Philippine National Anthem was finally again played as the Philippine Flag was hoisted during the Summer Olympics.

 

Thanks to Hidilyn Diaz, our Pinay Weighlifter Champion, who lifted a total of 224 kilograms and won the first-ever gold medal of the Philippines from the said event.

 

But do you know that we also have other Filipino Prides from the Summer Olympics? Let us go back in history and know more about them.

 

Teofilo Yldefonso (Bronze Medal in Swimming), Los Angeles 1932, Amsterdam 1928

Teofilo Yldefonso Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

The Swimming World Magazine was recognized as the “The Father of the Modern Breaststroke” because of his unorthodox breaststroke, Yldefonso was the first Southeast Asian to win an Olympic medal, aside from being tagged the greatest swimmer in his generation.

 

Yldefonso won four gold and two bronze medals in the Far Eastern Games from 1928 to 1934 and was the country’s pioneer winner, apart from being the only Filipino first podium finisher.

 

Simeon Toribio (Bronze Medal in Athletics), Los Angeles 1932

Simeon Toribio Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

Toribio first joined the Olympics in 1928 in Amsterdam but won his only medal upon joining the Summer Games in Los Angeles for the second time in 1932. He became the third placer at that time for the high jump event. He also became a three-time Olympian when he joined the Olympics in Berlin in 1936.

 

Even before he got recognized in the Olympic Games, Toribio already made a name as Asia’s Greatest Athlete in 1930 for winning five gold medals in the Far Eastern Games from 1921 to 1934.

 

Jose Villanueva (Bronze Medal in Boxing), Los Angeles 1932

Jose Villanueva Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

Villanueva was one of three Olympians who won the bronze medal during the 1932 Olympic Games. He won the game when his opponent, Joseph Lang from the US, dialed to show up for their bantamweight division match.

 

Villanueva’s career as a boxer didn’t grow that much, but he became a successful trainer as he trained one of the Philippines’ boxing superstars Gabriel “Flash” Elorde, who got the 130-pound title for seven years.

 

Miguel White (Silver Medal in Athletics), Berlin 1936

Miguel White Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

Miguel White was a Filipino-American who won a silver medal from the track and field 400-meter hurdles that were held in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, which was also infamously called the Nazi Games.

 

Anthony Villanueva (Silver Medal in Boxing), Tokyo 1964

Anthony Villanueva Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

Villanueva was a newcomer in boxing when before he joined the Tokyo’s Summer Games in 1964 and won the Philippines’ first silver Olympic medal. Before joining the Olympics, Villanueva already made some wins from the national tournament that made him qualified for the Tokyo Olympics.

 

Leopoldo Serantes (Bronze Medal in Boxing), Seoul 1988

Leopoldo Serantes Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

It was more than two decades before the Philippines bagged another medal after Villanueva.

Serantes became a gold medalist first from the 1985 Bangkok Southeast Asian Games when he played at the light flyweight division. After qualifying for the 1988 Seoul Olympics, Serantes was able to end the 24-year medal drought of the Philippines and bagged a bronze medal from the Game.

 

Roel Velasco (Bronze Medal in Boxing), Barcelona 1992

Roel Velasco Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

Before winning the bronze medal from the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, Roel Velasco first won a gold medal from the Asian Amateur Boxing Championships a few months before the Summer Games. He also made further successes in boxing history when he captured a gold medal from the 1997 Muhammad Ali Invitational Boxing Championships in Kentucky.

 

Mansueto “Onyok” Velasco (Silver Medal in Boxing), Atlanta 1996

Onyok Velasco Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

Onyok Velasco might be known these days in the entertainment industry as a sidekick comedian, but before that, he first brings honor to the Philippines during his prime boxing years. They said that we could bag the gold medal in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics light flyweight field after the controversial match, but Onyok was able to win the silver medal during the event.

 

Eumir Marcial (Bronze Medal in Boxing-Men's Middle) Tokyo 2020

eumir marcial Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes min

Eumir represented the Philippines in a number of international competitions. He won the bronze medal in the middleweight event at the 2020 Summer Olympics.

 

Carlo Paalam (medalist in Boxing- Men's Flyweight) Tokyo 2020

carlo paalam Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes min


Carlo is competing in his first Olympic Games at the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics. Carlo will be competing for gold against Great Britain’s Galal Yafai this Saturday, August 7, at 1:00 p.m.

He also won gold in the light flyweight division at the 30th SEA Games.

 

Nesthy Petecio (Silver Medal in Boxing-Women's Feather) Tokyo 2020

Nesthy Petecio Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes min

Nesthy became the first Filipino woman to win an Olympic medal in boxing when she gained a silver medal in the inaugural women's featherweight event at the 2020 Summer Olympics. She also won a silver medal at the 2014 World Championships and a gold medal at the 2019 World Championships.

 

Before Hidily Diaz, the Philippine National Anthem was also heard when Arianne Cerdea won a gold medal in the women's tenpin bowling event at the 1988 Summer Games in Seoul. However, because it was simply a demonstration sport at the time, her achievement was not counted in the official tally. Also excluded from the list is the Wushu Tournament Beijing 2008, where Willy Reyes Wang also won the gold. Wushu was not an official Olympic demonstration sport for the 2008 edition.

 

Hidilyn Diaz (Gold Medal in Weightlifting- Women's 55kg) Tokyo 2020, (Silver Medal) Rio 2016

Hidilyn Diaz Filipino Pride List of Summer Olympic Medalists Lumina Homes

Currently hailed as the Queen of Olympians, Hidilyn Diaz got the long-time dream of the Philippines to get its first gold medal from the Summer Olympics. Even though she faced many troubles during her training period, Diaz showed her strong perseverance and Faith while never losing her focus in bringing the Olympic gold medal for our country.

 

Our Filipino Olympians remind us that no matter how big the challenges life throws at us, we should never lose our Faith and continue to fight to reach our dreams. Congratulations, Hidilyn!

 

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