Liukin Does What Dad Couldn't

Daughter scores gymnastics gold as silver medalist father watches
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 15, 2008 2:42 PM CDT
US gymnasts Shawn Johnson, right, and Nastia Liukin embrace after the pair won silver and gold medals in the individual all-around finals. Liukin's father, coach Valeri Liukin, looks on.    (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
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(Newser) – Growing up in Texas, Nastia Liukin eyed her father's four Olympic gold medals, won for his gymnastics exploits as a USSR star. But one always eluded him: the all-around individual medal, which he came within a tenth of a point of in 1988. "I hope that I made up for that and I hope that he feels just as as proud as I am," Nastia said today after capturing the prize, the Canberra Times reports.

Nastia “fixed my mistake,” Valeri Liukin gushed. “I was second, and she fixed that.” Nastia, too, grasped the significance of the moment. “It just makes it even more amazing knowing that exactly 20 years ago my dad competed at the '88 Olympics and he was so close to winning that all-around gold medal,” she said.