Today is the day that Sheila Mae Perez gets her start in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. Sheila Mae is a diver, the only female Olympic diver from the Philippines. Sheila Mae’s favorite event, the 3 Meter Springboard competition gets started today.
Sheila Mae is from Davao, and started diving at the age of 9. Her family lives in Sasa, which is a part of Davao right on the Gulf, as a matter of fact, it is where the major wharf is in Davao. Sheila Mae got started diving to collect scrap metal from the ships in the wharf, to make money for her poor family.
Here is a video from Reuters about Sheila Mae. Please be a little patient, as it can be slow to load, especially if your Internet Connection is not too speedy.
I have to say, I am really rooting for Sheila Mae. It is said that she has a shot at getting a medal in the Olympics this year. Many Filipinos are pinning their hopes on Sheila Mae to bring home the first ever Gold Medal for the Philippines, although such a possibility is only remote. If she were to win a Gold Medal, I know that I would be extremely happy for her, though!
Good luck, Sheila Mae!
UPDATE: Unfortunately, Sheila Mae finished the 3m Springboard event in 23rd place.