Asian Games champ Hidilyn Diaz gets promoted to Sergeant in Air Force
Olympian and Asian Games gold medalist Hidilyn Diaz has been promoted to the rank of Sergeant in the Philippine Air Force for giving pride to the country during the regional sports meet in Indonesia.
The women’s weightlifting champion for the 53 kg division returned home to a heroes’ welcome on Wednesday at the Air Force headquarters in Villamor Air Base.
She had a rank of Airwoman First Class prior to her promotion.
Joining Diaz for the motorcade to the gymnasium were A2Cs Jeffrey Garcia and Nestor Colonia, who also joined the men’s weightlifting competition.
“After I won the silver medal in the Olympics, I wanted to retire, pero ginagawa ko pa rin ito dahil ito ang mission ni God para sa akin (but I still went on with it because this is God’s mission for me),” Diaz said.
Air Force chief Lt. Gen. Galileo Gerard Kintanar Jr. also acknowledged the sacrifices of the returning athletes in order to give honor to the country.
“Mahirap po ang maging isang atleta. Kailangan ng sipag, tyaga, disiplina at sakripisyo. Matagal na preparasyon, maraming bawal, madalas hiwalay sa mahal sa buhay (It’s hard to be an athlete. They need to have diligence, perseverance, disciple, and sacrifices. The preparation is long, so many things are prohibited, and they’re usually far from their loved ones). That’s why we give honor to those who excel,” he said.
“More importantly, they are testaments that dreams do come true through hard work, dedication, and faith,” he added.
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, who graced the event, also awarded Diaz with the Outstanding Achievement Medal.
“She is a good example of who we could be — ordinary people, who go on to do extraordinary things,” he said. /je
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