Northern New York Newspapers
NNY Business
NNY Living
Thu., Oct. 8
Serving the communities of Jefferson, St. Lawrence and Lewis counties, New York
In print daily. Online always.
Related Stories

Remsen celebrates to welcome home Olympic medalist Erin Hamlin


REMSEN — Two weeks after Erin M. Hamlin made Olympic history, she returned Thursday night from Sochi, Russia, to her hometown of Remsen.

The 27-year-old is the first female American luger to medal in singles at any Winter Olympics, and the first American to medal in luge since the 2002 Games in Salt Lake City.

“I can’t imagine a better group of people to come home and share this with,” Miss Hamlin told a gathering of hundreds at her alma mater, Remsen Junior-Senior High School. “I love coming home and seeing so many familiar faces and a lot of new ones, which is just as exciting, too.”

Before her arrival, a group of about 30 supporters gathered at a float made for the homecoming to cheer the athlete’s arrival, blaring music and dancing to keep warm in a 13-below-zero wind chill. As it approached, Miss Hamlin’s bus met a parade of emergency vehicles from every corner of Oneida County.

Well-wishers of all ages lined the route to the high school, waving signs and ringing cowbells — many cowbells.

At the school a brief video highlighted Miss Hamlin’s Olympic performance, until she was welcomed by thunderous cheers. The school band led the audience in the national anthem and school song.

Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. declared the date Miss Hamlin earned her bronze medal, Feb. 11, as “Erin Hamlin Day from this point on.”

“Erin belongs to us; she belongs to our county,” he said. He presented her with an Oneida County flag, which she then draped herself in as she had done with the American flag after her Olympic win.

After presentations from state Sen. Joseph A. Griffo, R-Rome, Assemblyman Kenneth D. Blankenbush, R-Black River, and Oneida County Sheriff Robert M. Maciol, Miss Hamlin addressed the crowd and talked about her bronze medal.

“I didn’t really expect to be bringing this home, but it feels pretty awesome to do it,” she said.

“After the first day of racing and hearing everything and everyone was so pumped ... and the race wasn’t even over yet ... made it easier, to be honest,” she said. “I was able to feel completely relaxed, no pressure at all, because I knew even if I didn’t win and come home with a medal, I’d be still excited.”

Commenting rules:
  1. Stick to the topic of the article/letter/editorial.
  2. When responding to issues raised by other commenters, do not engage in personal attacks or name-calling.
  3. Comments that include profanity/obscenities or are libelous in nature will be removed without warning.
Violators' commenting privileges may be revoked indefinitely. By commenting you agree to our full Terms of Use.
Syracuse Football Tickets Giveaway
Connect with Us
WDT News FeedsWDT on FacebookWDT on TwitterWDT on InstagramWDT for iOS: iPad, iPhone, and iPod touchWDT for Android
Showcase of Homes
Showcase of Homes