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Heil's hometown celebrates her silver medal
Sonia Sunger, ctvedmonton.ca
Published Sunday, February 14, 2010 4:16PM MST
Last Updated Friday, May 18, 2012 10:58PM MDT
The City of Spruce Grove was filled with pride Saturday evening as the community's hometown hero Jen Heil won Canada's first medal at the 2010 Winter Games, a silver in women's moguls.
The Spruce Grove Boston Pizza was filled with Heil's friends and strangers alike – all brought together with the common goal of seeing her win. While many had hoped Heil, who entered as the skier to beat wearing Bib. No. 1, would win the first Olympic gold medal for Canada on home turf, they were still very proud to see her capture silver.
"No matter what she does she just carries herself so well and we couldn't ask for a better ambassador for out city, our province and our country, so proud of her and what she's accomplished in her life," said Spruce Grove resident and family friend Jessica Scalzo.
On Saturday evening Heil hit an incredible run in front of a rain-drenched crowd at Cypress Mountain that included Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Former Prime minister Jean Chretien. But it wasn't enough to defeat Hannah Kearney of the United States, who bounced back from bitter disappointment in Turin to deliver the perhaps the best run of her life. Her teammate, Shannon Bahrke, took the bronze.
As the Kearney and Bahrke jumped and waved during the flower ceremony that followed, Heil smiled but looked slightly dazed between the elated Olympic gold and bronze medalists.
"There's no doubt about it I was going for gold," she said later at a press conference. But she added of her fellow teammates at these Olympics: "Canadians can be assured that that gold medal's coming."
Earlier this year the Spruce Grove put Heil on their city map, unveiling Jen Heil Way in honour of the Olympic champion.