Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos granted a prestigious award to two of the country’s silver medallists for their outstanding achievements at the London 2012 Paralympics.
Swimmer Moises Fuentes came second in the men’s 100-meter breaststroke while athlete Elkin Serna was runner-up in the men’s marathon, and both were awarded the Order of Boyaca during a ceremony at the Presidential Palace in Colombia.
In a speech, Santos highlighted the great achievement of both men while also paying tribute to all 39 Colombian athletes who competed in London. The Order of Boyaca award is reserved especially to those who have offered outstanding service to the country.
“This is a special day. We want to highlight it, because it is a very important element in this situation of optimism, this sense of faith in the future that is breathed in Colombia today,” said the president.
“We give an expression of thanks on behalf of the 46 million Colombians who see themselves in you. Every one of you is an example of overcoming,” added Santos.
Both Serna and Fuentes received a car, as well as the award, while the rest of the athletes got diplomas and scholarships to study at the Military University.
“Keep it up. You and other people with disabilities, who are struggling to overcome their difficulties, are going to receive the full support of the government. Thanks for giving us a demonstration of things that can be achieved with strength of will,” concluded the president.