First Olympian wrestler from Hawai’i, Clarissa Chun

15 08 2008

She is competing tomorrow, Saturday, August 16, in the Women’s Freestyle 48kg at 9:40am! Schedule is listed here. You can also set up alerts to your cellphone.

Twenty eight Asian American Olympians are in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. They will represent the U.S. in everything from diving to wrestling to volleyball and gymnastics.

Congratulations these athletes who have risen to the occasion, defeated stereotypes and now represent our nation in a global competition of athletic prowess. See all of them here.

U.S. Wresting Olympian Clarissa Chun can knock you on your backside pretty easily.

She did so to 2004 Olympic bronze medalist Patricia Miranda twice to rightfully claim her spot on the Olympics tea.

The 105-pound, female wrestler Clarissa notes,

“I move a lot […] Me having a judo background, I know how to throw. I like being very offensive on my feet, so I’ll take shots. I’ve been working on my defense, so I feel like I’m ready to go.”

She talks about growing up with her grandmother,

“My grandma is really old-school Chinese […] I remember growing up doing spirit days, where we go to the graveyard and honor my great-grandfather, my grandfather, my great-grandma. I remember folding fake money and putting it in bags and sewing up the bags, and at the graveyard they would have bins and they would light the bins on fire and burn the money.”

Clarissa has her undergraduate degree in communications from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and is planning to teach English to Japanese kindergarten students after the Olympics.There’s also a thought about one of her new interests. Clarissa augments her wrestling by training at a mixed martial arts facility in Denver.

“I’m a big fan of MMA,” she said. “I have friends who compete and I have access to train that way. I don’t know if I’ll do that, though.”

Fun fact?

Clarissa is listed as the second-smallest U.S. Olympian (4-11, 105 pounds). Gymnast Shawn Johnson is 4-8. Phenomenal things sometimes come in small packages.

Send her mail!

1096 Kara Ridge Pt.
Colorado Springs, CO 80907


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