Today’s a day we celebrate love—typically romantic love, but since what the world needs now is most definitely more love, sweet love, in general, today we’re celebrating all kinds of love: love of self, love of culture, love of country and love for our legacy.
That’s why this week’s #WomanCrushWednesday is Jamaican-American Olympic bobsled pilot Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian, who was understandably overcome with emotion during a press conference at the Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea. When asked about what it means to be a role model, she responded through tears:
It’s important to me that little girls and little boys see someone that looks like them, talks like them, has the same culture as them, has crazy curly hair and wears it natural, has brown skin, included in different things in this world. When you grow up and you don’t see that, you feel that you can’t do it. And that is not right.
Fenlator-Victorian’s devotion to her people is also part of the reason she returned to her father’s native Jamaica to compete in the 2018 Winter Games after competing for America in 2014:
[C]oming back home to Jamaica, I wanted my Jamaican people to see that they could do it. ... And there’s not just one path that way or one path this way to get out of poverty, to make money or to make a name for themselves. If they want to be a winter Olympian and do alpine skiing, now they see their fellow Jamaicans in the Winter Olympics.
Fenlator-Victorian, who is the pilot of Jamaica’s first Olympic women’s bobsled team, also told NorthJersey.com:
My passion for culture, my heritage, my representation, my voice but most importantly a platform for expansion of diversity and inclusion is what drove this decision home. I hope this historic Olympic first and my team’s participation will open doors of discussion and action for other nations to take the plunge to participate.
We already know that the Jamaican bobsled team is lit—although we also know the team is now dealing with some major Olympic drama, since its coach abruptly quit Wednesday (and purportedly owns the sled the team is due to compete in). But despite the distraction, we’ll be watching on Feb. 20 and 21 to hopefully see Fenlator-Victorian and her team bring home a victory to Jamaica!