TYRONE, Ga. -- As reliable as the sun rising over Fayette County was the visitor set to arrive at two Fayette County schools Friday.
Christian Taylor is a Robert J. Burch Elementary School alum-turned-Olympian. One month ago, he competed in the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro and won his second Olympic gold medal.
And throughout his time in Rio, the triple jumper made multiple promises. Thursday, the one-time Burch Bear was ready to fulfill them.
“He’s really coming to our school,” Burch’s principal Dr. Felecia Spicer said to students this week. “Christian is a hero here at Burch.”
After winning his gold medal in Rio, Taylor was already thinking about his trip back to Burch.
“I’ve got plans to take the medals back to my elementary, Burch Elementary,” he said in Rio after winning.
“I don’t forget the journey,” Taylor said in an interview with 11Alive Thursday. “I for sure don’t forget where I came from.”
A young elementary student introduced the gold medal winner as “Mr. Christian Taylor,” prompting a standing ovation by the young crowd.
“I walked these same hallways, used these same bathrooms, and even ate in the same cafeteria as you guys ” Taylor said to the kids. “I would love for you guys to be able to share this moment with me, so thank you so much.”
Taylor spoke about dreams and showed the students his hardware. Most of the kids had an instant reaction: “It’s heavy!”
“People like Christian bring dreams into our building,” Spicer said. “Whereas some kids can travel around and have experiences, all students don’t have those opportunities.”
Taylor won his second consecutive gold medal in Rio by jumping 17.86 meters. And after both victories, he took the medal to Burch and to his old high school, Sandy Creek.
Sandy Creek pulled out all the stops for Taylor. They made a paper Olympic torch that a student held in front of Taylor as they entered. Meanwhile, the marching band played over the resounding cheers.
“I see signs of Tokyo 2020. God willing I’ll be there,” Taylor said to the high schools, sparking more cheers.
And if in four years Christian Taylor wins another medal, we know where he’ll be in four years and one month.
“I think it’s always important important to remember where you’re from.”