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Inspiring Canadians - In Sport and Life

Honoured Member

LORI FUNG

Inducted in 2004

Member Details

Date of Birth: February 21, 1963
Place of Birth: Vancouver, British Columbia
Sport: Rhythmic Gymnastics
Member Category: Athlete

Career Highlights

1982-1988

Seven National Rhythmic Gymnastics Titles

1982,84,86

Four-Continents title

1984

Olympic Gold Medal

1985

Swiss Invitational overall champion

Honoured Member LORI FUNG
Inspire

Story

Lori Fung's winning performance at the 1984 Olympic Games proved the power of passion and dedication. As a member of the B.C. Rhythmika club, the young athlete showed a near obsession for rhythmic gymnastics. She trained six hours a day during the week and cut back to three hours a day on weekends. Demonstrating incredible strength, poise, and grace with the ball, hoop, ribbon, and clubs, Fung impressed judges with her carefully crafted routines. In 1982, at the age of 19, she became Canada's rhythmic gymnastics champion. Upon learning that her sport was to be included in the Olympics for the first time in 1984, Fung set her heart on making it to the Games. She finished her high school courses by correspondence and devoted her life to training. She dominated her sport in Canada, winning the national title in 1983 and 1984. Internationally, however, Fung was virtually unknown. She ranked 23rd in the world prior to the Games, and Romania's Doina Staiculescu was considered to be the Olympic favourite. Fung's hard work paid off, however, and her brilliant performances earned her the all-around Olympic gold medal. Following the Games, Fung continued to shine in national and international competition. Her Olympic gold also earned her celebrity status-she performed for such prominent figures as Pope John Paul II, Prince Charles and Princess Diana, and the Prime Minister of Canada. In preparation for the 1988 Olympics, Fung flew to Toronto once a month to train with Liliana Dimitrova of Seneca College. This time, the champion gymnast was one of Canada's best hopes for Olympic gold. Fung shocked the athletic community once more, however, not with a spectacular victory, but with the announcement of her retirement. Prior to the Games, she was stricken with the Epstein Barr virus as well as tendonitis of the feet. Fung was in so much pain that even walking was often unbearable. Unable to continue, she sadly withdrew. For her brilliant athletic achievements, Fung received the Order of Canada in 1985.


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