Team USA selected the Rio Olympics’ “it-girl” Simone Biles to carry the flag into Maracanã Stadium during Sunday night’s closing ceremony.
Biles is the first woman U.S. gymnast to carry the flag. She’s the second American gymnast to carry the flag in an opening or closing ceremony after Alfred Jochim marched with the American flag during opening ceremonies at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, according to The Huffington Post.
Mary Carillo, a former Olympian and NBC commentator, called her “the most stunning athlete I’ve ever seen” as the U.S flag towered above Biles’ 4′ 9″ frame.
Biles leaves Rio with tremendous accomplishments; she’s won a total of five medals – four gold and one bronze. She’s the first U.S. gymnast to win four gold medals in a single Olympics.
“It’s an incredible honor to be selected as the flag bearer by my Team USA teammates,” Biles said in an interview with TeamUSA.org. “This experience has been the dream of a lifetime for me and my team and I consider it a privilege to represent my country, the United States Olympic Committee and USA Gymnastics by carrying our flag. I also wish to thank the city of Rio de Janeiro, and the entire country of Brazil, for hosting an incredible Games.”
Biles was a fan favorite on the floor as multiple athletes stopped the gymnast for photos and selfies during the closing ceremony.
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