Famous Okies: Shannon Miller

Shannon Miller in 1996
Posted at 12:44 PM, Jul 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-29 14:04:14-04

InShannon Miller is an American former artistic gymnast and she's a famous Okie!

Born on March 10, 1977, as Shannon Lee Miller, her family moved to Edmond, Okla., when she was only six months old.

Miller began her gymnastics career when she was five. She attended Edmond North High School on a flexible school schedule so she could train, travel, and compete.

in 1993, Miller won her first-ever world all-around championship. She would defend her title again at the 1994 world all-around championship.

In 1992, Miller petitioned to compete at the Olympic Trials and was eventually chosen to be a part of Team USA for the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, Spain.

Her run at the 1992 Olympics is historic: it ended with Miller scoring the highest of any gymnast in the overall team portion. She would eventually achieve to win two silver and three bronze medals, the most won at a single Olympic Games without winning gold.

For several years, Miller would compete around the world before eventually becoming a member of the Magnificent Seven team for the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Ga. She would later win two gold medals.

It wasn't long after that Miller officially retired.

Miller's career is a thing of legends: she is the current most decorated U.S. female gymnast in Olympics history with a total of seven medals. Together with 16 World Championships, she is the second-most decorated American gymnast.

The most? Simone Biles.

In her retirement years, Miller has become a member of the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame, the United States Olympic Hall of Fame the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame, and the Women's International Sports Hall of Fame.

She is also the only woman, in any sport, to be inducted into the United States Olympic Hall of Fame twice, as an individual and for her team.

Miller wrote a book about her time as a gymnast in "It's Not About Perfect: Competing for My Country and Fighting for My Life."

An excerpt of the book reads:

"What was the story of that girl on the podium? Maybe it was that you cannot succeed if you don’t dare to try. That you must keep trying even after you fall on your backside. And that you should never let others decide how much you can achieve. Dream big, work hard, and don’t set limits on what you could do or be.

I had success because I didn’t know that I wasn’t supposed to. It didn’t matter that I was a girl or that I was small or that I was reserved. It didn’t matter that my parents didn’t have infinite resources. It wasn’t about perfect; it was about making the full effort. It was about setting goals and steadfastly refusing to be derailed. Keep passion alive. Many people don’t realize how strong they truly are until they are challenged. My sport did that for me. Gymnastics allowed me to see what I was made of. And when I had doubts or faced obstacles, it always reminded me."

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