The bronze medalist in canoeing from Peru was stripped of his medal after complaining about a lack of support from municipalities.
Context: Return recognition!Athlete breaks down in tears and assures he has no support
Between tears and anger, Peruvian athlete Heriberto Gutierrez Robles He stripped him of the medal awarded to him by Raúl Pena, the mayor of Abanque.
Gutierrez won a bronze medal in kayaking at the 2023 Pan American Games in Chile and was invited to receive a medal from the city of his birth.
He did not refuse the invitation. He arrived wearing an Olympic jersey and listened to speeches at the “Solemn Meeting to Honor the Distinguished Sons” event.
After listening and receiving a diploma and medal from the city, they gave him a microphone so he could express his gratitude.
However, they never expected that the athlete would actually tell the truth. “It’s so ironic to be recognized for my efforts when I’m alone,” he said, leaving the crowd stunned.
Then he turned around and said specifically to the mayor: “Mr. Mayor, you rejected my support at that time. Everyone. This is my effort. Thank you very much.” He said in a broken voice.
Unable to hold back his tears any longer, the young athlete stepped away from the microphone, took off his medal and placed it on the floor of the stage along with the certificate he had received, while those present applauded his bravery and courage. Some even stood up from their seats and gave them a standing ovation.
He later posted a message on the social network in which he recalled his “helplessness” when “they always turned their backs on him” when he asked for support.
“Neither talking to him in person nor through documents… Every time I go looking for answers I go around. We know there are laws to support this sport but they prefer to say no… It seems this is just ‘for decoration’. In short, it’s the powerlessness and anger about it. I love you, Aprimac, today and forever,” he explained.
The athlete also participated in the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, but at that time he finished eighth and sixth respectively in the two events of kayak slalom.
On the other hand, a publication about the event was posted on the official page of the municipality of Abancay, but no photo or reference of Gutiérrez was published, and according to the medalist, the commune deleted the video of the event.