Li Donghua (age 55)

December 10, 1967

[Li Donghua] Introduction

Li Donghua (born 10 December 1967) is a gymnast who represented his adopted country of Switzerland at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, where he won the gold medal on the pommel horse.

[Li Donghua] Career

Li Donghua began his gymnastics career competing for China and won a national title on the pommel horse in 1987, but his career was nearly derailed when he suffered a neck injury that prevented him from making the 1988 Olympic team. His determination and newfound love of Esperanza Friedli overcame his injury and the social pressures of being together and they moved to Lucerne. Despite not officially competing for Switzerland until 1994, his gymnastic career flourished and he became the first Swiss Olympic medalist in gymnastics since 1952 when he won gold on the pommel horse at the 1996 Olympic Games.

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